No Holding Back

Landmark study of the Canadians' first major operation in Normandy New revelations on the death of German panzer ace Michael Wittmann Handsomely illustrated with maps, photos, and diagrams On August 8, 1944, the Canadian Army launched ...

No Holding Back

Landmark study of the Canadians' first major operation in Normandy New revelations on the death of German panzer ace Michael Wittmann Handsomely illustrated with maps, photos, and diagrams On August 8, 1944, the Canadian Army launched Operation Totalize, a massive armored and mechanized infantry attack that aimed to break through enemy defenses south of Caen and trap the German Army in Normandy by linking up with Patton's Third Army.

Operation Totalize 1944

In Operation Totalize, Lieutenant-General Guy Simonds' II Canadian Corps launched an attack from its positions along the Bourguébus Ridge south of Caen, striking south-southeast astride the main Caen–Falaise road toward the high ground ...

Operation Totalize 1944

In Operation Totalize, Lieutenant-General Guy Simonds' II Canadian Corps launched an attack from its positions along the Bourguébus Ridge south of Caen, striking south-southeast astride the main Caen–Falaise road toward the high ground that dominated the town of Falaise and the key west-east lateral road that ran through this town. Using sophisticated operational art the initial break-in achieved rapid success; indeed, more tactical success than any previous Allied break-in attack in Normandy. However, despite this rapid initial success, Totalize did not subsequently secure a decisive operational-level victory. Indeed, Simonds' forces subsequently struggled swiftly to complete the second break-in battle, and to transit into rapid exploitation operations. Had Simond's force been successful the German army may not have been able to extract themselves from the Falaise pocket and would have been surrounded and defeated – possibly bringing about the early end of the war in Europe.

Operation Totalize

Operation Totalize is renowned for the death of SS panzer Ace Michael Wittmann at the hands of Trooper Joe Ekins and the destruction of Worthington Force, the result of a navigational error.

Operation Totalize

By early August 1944 the Germans fighting in Normandy had been worn down by the battles around Caen, while to the west, the American breakout was finally gaining momentum. Now was the time to launch II Canadian Corps south towards Falaise. With much of the German armor having been stripped away for the Mortain Counter-Attack, hopes ran high that the Corps, reinforced with British tanks, the 51st Highland and the Polish Armoured Divisions, would repeat the success of their predecessors in the Battle of Amiens. An innovative change of tactics to a night armored assault and the conversion of seventy-two self-propelled guns to armored personnel carriers for the accompanying infantry was very successful, but up against their implacable foes, 12th Hitlerjugend SS Panzer Division, the pause for bombing allowed Kurt 'Panzer' Meyer to deploy his division. Consequently, when the 4th Canadian and Polish Armoured Divisions were launched into their first battle they made frustratingly little progress. As the Canadians advanced over the following days, the battle degenerated into a costly fight for ground as the Hitlerjugend struggled to contain the inexperienced Poles and Canadians. Operation Totalize is renowned for the death of SS panzer Ace Michael Wittmann at the hands of Trooper Joe Ekins and the destruction of Worthington Force, the result of a navigational error.

Battlefield Tour Operation Totalize

2. Verdenskrig. Frankrig. Beskrivelse af 2. canadiske armékorps operation Totalize mod landevejen Caen-Falaise 7-8 august 1944. I beskrivelsen er der i særlig grad lagt vægt på planen for taktisk luftstøtte til operationen samt på 51.

Battlefield Tour  Operation Totalize

2. Verdenskrig. Frankrig. Beskrivelse af 2. canadiske armékorps operation Totalize mod landevejen Caen-Falaise 7-8 august 1944. I beskrivelsen er der i særlig grad lagt vægt på planen for taktisk luftstøtte til operationen samt på 51. Highland Divisions rolle i operationen bl.a. anvendelsen af pansrede mandskabsvogne og de operative problemer ved at gennemføre et natangreb i divisionsramme. Beskrivelsen er forsynet med fyldigt kortmateriale samt korps- og divisionsbefalinger og Order of Battle (troppeinddeling).

Battle of Normandy

This book contains numerous plans and maps and is richly illustrated with unpublished photographs and color armor profiles.

Battle of Normandy

In July and August 1944, the Allies launched a number of operations intended to break through the German front line. Operations Totalize and Tractable were intended to drive the Germans back to the south of the Normandy town of Falaise, thus creating the famous "Falaise Gap." Ludovic Fortin is has become a real specialist on the British Army and of operations in Normandy in particular. His human approach to events gives a new perspective to the conflicts. He is also the author of the highly successful book, "British Tanks in Normandy" also published by Histoire and Collections. This book contains numerous plans and maps and is richly illustrated with unpublished photographs and color armor profiles.

BAOR BATTLEFIELD TOUR OPERATION TOTALIZE Directing Staff Edition

This is the extended Directing Staff version of the BAOR Battlefield Tour covering Operation Totalize - planning and operational phases in detail.

BAOR BATTLEFIELD TOUR   OPERATION TOTALIZE   Directing Staff Edition

This is the extended Directing Staff version of the BAOR Battlefield Tour covering Operation Totalize - planning and operational phases in detail. The work describes the operations of 2 Canadian Corps astride the road Caen-Falaise on 7/8 August 1944. It is especially concerned with the air plan and the part played by the 51st Highland Division, with particular reference to the use of armoured personnel carriers and maintenance of direction during a night advance. Complete with 10 large-scale maps, appendices and 10 photographs.

The Bloody Battle for Tilly

The fierce battle to capture the French village of Tilly-la-Campagne was an exceptionally bloody episode in the story of the allied breakout from Normandy in the summer of 1944.

The Bloody Battle for Tilly

The fierce battle to capture the French village of Tilly-la-Campagne was an exceptionally bloody episode in the story of the allied breakout from Normandy in the summer of 1944. Small Allied infantry units faced an almost impossible mission, hampered by the proximity of the elite German 1st SS Panzer Division and ‘friendly fire’ from the erratic USAAF bombing raids. If that was not enough, appalling tactical errors by Allied commanders resulted in infantry attacks which were as costly pro rata as the losses suffered on the first day of the Somme. Drawing on vivid eyewitness accounts and the recollections of many who were there in 1944, Ken Tout’s masterly portrayal of the bloody battle is a fitting tribute to the British and Canadian youth, who fought, and the many who died, during the breakout from Normandy in the last summer of the war in Europe. Kent Tout, PhD, served as an NCO with the 1st Northants Yeomanry during the Second World War, fighting in Sherman tanks and saw action at Operation 'Totalize'. He now lives in West Sussex.

From Arromanches to the Elbe

This book also draws on a variety of contemporary sources—not least of which are the archives of fellow officer Marcus Cunliffe, a distinguished British scholar and author, who specialized in American Studies after the war (particularly ...

From Arromanches to the Elbe

A scholarly exploration of the British armoured regiment and its part in the Allied campaign to liberate Europe during World War II. On June 14, 1944, the tanks of the 144th Regiment Royal armored Corps disembarked on Gold Beach during the Normandy landings. A long and bitter campaign began, taking them across Northwest Europe into the heart of Germany. During that advance the regiment took part in several important actions. These included Operation Pomegranate (July 1944), Operation Totalize, an innovative night attack which was one of the final steps to breaking out of the Caen bridgehead (7/8 August 1944), the siege and capture of Le Havre, the fighting in Holland during late 1944, the crossing of the Rhine, and the capture of Bremen just before the end of the war in Europe. The author investigates the regiment’s service through interviews with his late father-in-law, Captain R.W. Thorne, who had been an officer in it during the war. This book also draws on a variety of contemporary sources—not least of which are the archives of fellow officer Marcus Cunliffe, a distinguished British scholar and author, who specialized in American Studies after the war (particularly military and cultural history). From Arromanches to the Elbe is a serious contribution to World War II history. It explores all aspects of army life, such as training and the social history of an active service unit, and will appeal to those interested in the European campaign, the use of tanks and armored warfare, and, of course, the final battles to defeat Hitler’s Third Reich.

Battlefield Tour

Battlefield Tour


Cromwell vs Jagdpanzer IV

By 1944, the evolution of armoured doctrine had produced very different outcomes in Britain and Germany.

Cromwell vs Jagdpanzer IV

By 1944, the evolution of armoured doctrine had produced very different outcomes in Britain and Germany. Offering a good balance of speed, protection and firepower, the British Cromwell tank was much faster than its German opponent, but the Jagdpanzer IV tank destroyer had a high-velocity main gun and a lower profile that made it formidable on the defensive, especially in ambush situations. The two types would fight in a series of bloody encounters, from the initial days of the struggle for Normandy through to its climax as the Allies sought to trap their opponents in the Falaise Pocket. Using archive photographs, specially commissioned artwork and battle reports, this fascinating study expertly assesses the realities of tactical armoured combat during the desperate battles after D-Day.

Waffen SS Armour in Normandy

This is an impressive look at tactical-level events and command decisions, highlighting the armored combat tactics that were able to stop Montgomery's Army Group from breaking through the German lines near Caen for two months.

Waffen SS Armour in Normandy

Waffen-SS Armour in Normandy presents the combat history of SS-Panzer Regiment 12 and SS-Panzerjäger Abteilung 12 in the Battle for France from June to the end of August 1944 based on transcriptions of their original unit war diaries from the Military History Archives in Prague. Both armored units belonged to the 12.SS-Panzer Division Hitlerjugend. SS-Panzer Regiment 12 was fully equipped with Panzer IV and Panther tanks. The main AFV of SS-Panzerjäger Abteilung 12 was the Jagdpanzer IV L/48 tank destroyer. The structure of the volume is partly source publication (documents of SS-Panzer Regiment 12) and partly study (the deployment of SS-Panzerjäger Abteilung 12). The text was written and footnoted by the author based upon original wartime files in Prague that have remained almost unknown. The book starts with the story of the units' establishment and training in 1943/1944, including, for example, the shipments of equipment, orders of battle and tactical numbers of the tanks. After this introduction, a highly detailed daily chronology of the combat actions is provided, from 12.SS-Panzer Division traveling to the Caen sector to Operation Totalize and the withdrawal to the Seine River. Documents from SS-Panzer Regiment 12 presented in the book include the following: combat reports, list of knocked-out enemy tanks, German personnel and tank losses, combat orders, summary of acquired combat experiences and others. This is an impressive look at tactical-level events and command decisions, highlighting the armored combat tactics that were able to stop Montgomery's Army Group from breaking through the German lines near Caen for two months. The study includes a number of detailed maps and excellent photos. In addition, the book has benefited from the contribution of rare information, photographs and documents from the archive of noted Waffen-SS historian Mark C. Yerger.

The Falaise Gap Battles

“A great book” on the decisive engagement of the Battle of Normandy in the series that brings World War II battles to life (Army Rumour Service).

The Falaise Gap Battles

“A great book” on the decisive engagement of the Battle of Normandy in the series that brings World War II battles to life (Army Rumour Service). The denouement of the battle of Normandy, the fighting around Falaise and Chambois in August 1944, and the pursuit of the retreating German armies to the Seine provided the Allies with an immense victory—all made possible by Operation Cobra . . . As US First Army and British Second Army squeezed the western and northern edges of the German salient, so Third Army rushed headlong eastwards and then north to create the lower of two pincers—the other formed as the Canadian First Army and the Polish 1st Armored Division pushed south of Caen. As could be expected, the Germans did not simply give up: they fought furiously to keep the pincers from closing. When they did, attacks from inside the pocket to break out and outside the pocket to break in led to fierce fighting between Chambois and Argentan. When the dust settled, between 80,000 and 100,000 troops had been trapped by the Allied encirclement. Estimates vary considerably, but it seems safe to say that at least 10,000 of the German forces were killed and around 50,000 became PoWs. The Past & Present Series reconstructs historical battles by using photography, juxtaposing modern views with those of the past together with concise explanatory text. It shows how much infrastructure has remained and how much such as outfits, uniforms, and ephemera has changed, providing a coherent link between now and then.

A Fine Night for Tanks

In the German counter-attack that followed, the British smashed the elite Tiger-equipped Wittman Troop. Using eyewitness accounts from tank crews and infantry, Ken Tout reveals how Totalize was a resounding Allied success.

A Fine Night for Tanks

On 7 August 1944, the Canadian Army, reinforced with British Army units, sent four armored columns south of Caen to close the Falaise Gap. Driving through the night, the British tanks reached their objectives behind German lines and linked up with their Canadian compatriots. In the German counter-attack that followed, the British smashed the elite Tiger-equipped Wittman Troop. Using eyewitness accounts from tank crews and infantry, Ken Tout reveals how Totalize was a resounding Allied success.

21 Days in Normandy

His arguments are detailed and based upon in-depth research, and the book has many detailed maps to help the reader follow the action.” —Warfare History Network

21 Days in Normandy

“Right[s] some of the injustices done to the Canadians” on their maligned actions during the Invasion of Normandy. “An absorbing account” (Firetrench). The Canadian Fourth Armoured Division crossed the Channel in July 1944 to support the invading forces and assist in the Allied attempts to break out of the Normandy beachhead. They were heavily engaged in Operation Totalize and Operation Tractable but have been criticized for their failure to close the ‘Falaise gap’ and complete the entrapment of withdrawing German forces. Their commander, Major General George Kitching, was relieved of his command after just twenty-one days in action. Angelo Caravaggio reexamines the division’s performance and particularly that of its leadership. Using new information, he establishes that, despite entering battle for the first time during one of the most challenging phases of Allied operations in August 1944, the 4th Armoured Division, under Kitching’s leadership, proved resilient and adaptive in overcoming the volatile and unpredictable nature of warfare in Normandy. The combat operations of August 1944 transformed the division into a battle-hardened combat formation that would later distinguish itself through its ability to generate a sustained drive across France out of the chaos and destruction of the Normandy battles. “The author uses new information to demonstrate the unit did show flexibility and adapted to the battlefield quickly, despite being thrown into battle during one of the Normandy Campaign’s critical phases. His arguments are detailed and based upon in-depth research, and the book has many detailed maps to help the reader follow the action.” —Warfare History Network

1st and 2nd Northamptonshire Yeomanry 1939 1946

The Northamptonshire Yeomanry was divided in May 1939 to form two Cavalry Light Tank Regiments;1st Northamptonshire Yeomanry (TA) - Regimental Headquarters and "A" Sqn at Northampton, "B" Sqn at Daventry and "C" Sqn at Brackley.2nd ...

1st and 2nd Northamptonshire Yeomanry 1939 1946

The Northamptonshire Yeomanry was divided in May 1939 to form two Cavalry Light Tank Regiments;1st Northamptonshire Yeomanry (TA) - Regimental Headquarters and "A" Sqn at Northampton, "B" Sqn at Daventry and "C" Sqn at Brackley.2nd Northamptonshire Yeomanry (TA) - Regimental Headquarters and "A" Sqn at Northampton, "B" and "C" Sqns at Kettering.Both Regiments formed part of 20th Light Armoured Brigade (TA) and were mobilised on 1 September 1939.During World War II 1st Northants Yeo (TA) remained in the United Kingdom and from 1941 - 1942 were part of the Coats Mission, the plan to evacuate the Royal Family in the event of a German invasion. In 1944 now as a part of the 33rd Armoured Brigade they participated in the Normandy Landings on D Day June 6. The brigade's three regiments which included the East Riding of Yorkshire Yeomanry and the 144 Regiment RAC, landed on Gold Beach in Normandy. Their role was to support any infantry who were in need of armour support, therefore the Brigade rarely fought as one entity. One of the occasions when the Brigade did undertake an operation on its own was at Le Mesnil-Patry on June 11, 1944. Further battles they were involved in were around Caen, including Operation Charnwood 7 July, the battle to capture Caen. On the July 16, 1944 it was involved in Operation Pomegranate, where it come under the command of the 59th (Staffordshire) Infantry Division. On August 8, 1944 it was involved in Operation Totalize, a planned breakout from the Caen Salient. It was during Operation Totalize that Joe Ekins a Sherman Tank gunner of the Northamptonshire Yeomanry gained recognition for killing the renowned German tank commander, Michael Wittmann, the 4th top scoring tank ace in history, on August 8, 1944 near St. Aignan de Cramesnil, France. They were briefly attached to the 51st (Highland) Division for the actions around the Battle of the Bulge. The Regiment was reformed and re-equipped with LVT 4 (Buffalo, amphibious armoured fighting vehicles), for the Rhine crossing and was placed under the command of the 79th Armoured Division.

Road to Falaise

In August 1944, Lieutenant-General Guy G. Simonds' II Canadian Corps launched two set-piece offensives, Operations Totalize and Tractable, in order to prevent the German Seventh Army's escape and seal the pocket completely.

Road to Falaise

This key title in the acclaimed Battle Zone Normandy series explores Operations Totalize and Tractable.