- Historic Sites
Hell’s Highway To Arnhem
Operation Market-Garden promised to lay an airborne red carpet to victory.
June 1971 | Volume 22, Issue 4
But if it was a failure, it was a gallant one. If boldness, imagination, and sheer raw courage deserve the reward of victory, then victory should have gone to the men of the First Allied Airborne Army. The fighting record of the ist British Airborne in Arnhem has been justly celebrated as an epic. Yet the exploits of the two American airborne divisions that defended Hell’s Highway against all odds and brilliantly won the great bridge at Nijmegen have too often been overlooked. AS General Brereton put it: “The 82nd and 101st Divisions … accomplished every one of their objectives. … In the years to come everyone will remember Arnhem, but no one will remember that two American divisions fought their hearts out in the Dutch canal country and whipped hell out of the Germans.”
“I think we might be going a bridge too far,” General Browning had warned a week before the airdrop. Unwittingly, he had framed the epitaph of the greatest airborne assault in history.