March, 1945: Operation Veritable

The First Canadian Army attacked Germany's last major defensive position - the Seigfried Line - and then pushed through the Reichswald and Hochwald forests. The battle conditions were terrible - too much mud and winter rain. The wet dark pine forests and waterlogged countryside were perfect for small scale German ambushes and counter-attacks. Many Canadian units advanced too quickly and were badly hurt. The Allied advantages in tanks and aircraft were of no help in this rugged terrain. Once again it's up to the infantry to slog through it. By March 10th the Canadians had cleared the entire west bank of the Rhine of German forces, but at a cost of 5,304 casualties.