17th Airborne Division (United States)

17th Airborne Division (United States)

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name=17th Airborne Division

caption=17th ABD Shoulder Sleeve Insignia
nickname=Golden Talons
motto=Thunder From Heaven
colors=Black and Gold
type=Parachute Infantry
branch=United States Army
dates=January 15, 1942–June 16, 1945
country=United States of America
battles=World War II
*Battle of the Bulge
*Operation Varsity
notable_commanders= Major General William Miles (Bud) Miley

The 17th Airborne Division was an airborne division in the United States Army during World War II, and was commanded by Major General William M. Miley. It was officially activated as an airborne division in April 1943 and took part in several training exercises throughout the remainder of that year, including the Knollwood Maneuver, in which it played a vital part in ensuring that the airborne division remained as a military formation in the United States Army after the poor performance of American airborne forces in Sicily. It remained in the United States as a reserve formation and did not take part in the first two large-scale airborne operations conducted by the Allies, Operation Husky and Operation Neptune, only transferring to Britain after the end of Operation Overlord.

When the division arrived in Britain, it came under the command of XVIII Airborne Corps, part of the First Allied Airborne Army, but was not chosen to participate in Operation Market-Garden, the airborne landings in Holland, as Allied planners believed it had arrived too late and could not prepare itself in time for the operation. However, after the end of Operation Market-Garden the division was shipped to France and then Belgium to fight in the Ardennes during the Battle of the Bulge. The 17th gained its only Medal of Honor during its time fighting in the Ardennes, and was then withdrawn to Luxembourg to prepare for an assault over the River Rhine. In March 1945, the division participated in its first, and only, airborne operation, dropping alongside the British 6th Airborne Division as a part of Operation Varsity. The division then advanced through Northern Germany until the end of World War II, when it briefly undertook occupation duties in Germany before shipping back to the United States. There, it was officially deactivated in September, 1945, although it was briefly reactivated as a training division between 1948 and 1949.


The 17th Airborne Division was activated on April 15, 1943 at Camp Mackall in North Carolina, under the command of the newly-promoted Major-General William M. Miley. The division was originally composed of the 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment, activated on January 11, 1943 at Fort Benning, the 193rd Glider Infantry Regiment, and the 194th Glider Infantry Regiment. [ Devlin, p. 200 ] The official dedication ceremony for the unit took place on May 1, 1943 with thousands of civilian and military spectators, including Major-General Eldridge G. Chapman, overall commander of Airborne Command and of all American airborne forces during World War II. [ Devlin, p. 201 ]

Actions during World War II

Knollwood Manoeuvre

Despite being activated in 1943, the division was not immediately shipped out to Europe to participate in combat, as occurred to the 82nd Airborne Division, which participated in the first large-scale Allied airborne operation, Operation Husky and had also been activated at the same time as the 17th Airborne Division. [ Devlin, p. 204 ] It remained in the United States when Operation Husky took place, and in December 1943 it was chosen to participate in what came to be termed as the Knollwood Manoeuvre by the Swing Board. The Swing Board was a committee formed in mid-September 1943, composed of United States Army Air Force, parachute-glider infantry and artillery officers, whose purpose was to demonstrate the validity and military effectiveness of American airborne forces. It was chaired by General Swing, airborne advisor to General Eisenhower and who had recently returned from Sicily. The Swing Board was necessitated by the poor performance of American airborne forces during Operation Husky, during which the parachute and glider-borne airborne troops had suffered high casualties and had been perceived to have failed to achieve many of the objectives they were tasked with during the invasion of Sicily. Devlin, p.246 ] General Eisenhower had conducted a thorough review of the performance of the American airborne forces during the operation, and had come to the conclusion that they were too difficult to control in combat and that as a result there should be no divisional-sized airborne formations. Despite this scathing criticism of the airborne forces, General George Marshall had ordered the Swing Board to be formed and a giant airborne manoeuvre be performed in December to evaluate the effectiveness of divisional-sized airborne forces. [ Flanagan, p. 99 ]

Quote box
quote = ”I do not believe in the airborne division. I believe that airborne troops should be reorganized in self-contained units, comprising infantry, artillery, and special services, all about the strength of a regimental combat team [...] To employ at any time and place a whole division would require a dropping over such an extended area that I seriously doubt that a division commander could regain control and operate the scattered forces as one unit."
source = [The conclusion of General Eisenhower's review of the performance of American airborne forces during Operation Husky]
width = 35%
align = left

The Swing Board therefore met in the middle of September and began to make arrangements for the manoeuvre that would effectively decide the fate of the airborne division as a concept for the American military. The manoeuvre would also allow the 17th Airborne and its individual units to receive further airborne training, as had occurred with the 101st Airborne Division and the 82nd a few months previously. [ Huston, p. 98 ] The purpose of the manoeuvre would be for the attacking airborne forces to capture Knollwood airport in North Carolina, after which the manoeuvre was incidentally named, and the defending forces to repel such an assault. The entire operation would be observed by Lieutenant-General Leslie J. McNair, overall commander of the ground forces of the US Army; McNair had once been a supporter of the airborne troops and the concept of the airborne division, but had been greatly disappointed by their performance in North Africa and more recently Sicily. His observations and reports to the US War Department, and ultimately General Eisenhower, would do much to decide the success or failure of the exercise. [ Devlin, p. 247 ] Whilst an important observer, however, McNair would not actually direct the exercise; it would be directed by Brigadier-General F. W. Evans, commanding general of I Troop Carrier Command, the formation under which all air transport for airborne operations were controlled. [ Huston, p. 136 ] The attacking forces for the manoeuvre consisted of the 11th Airborne Division with the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment attached to it for the duration of the exercise, whilst the defenders were composed of a composite combat team from the 17th Airborne Division with a battalion from the 541st Parachute Infantry Regiment attached. [ Flanagan, p. 100 ] The exercise occurred on the night of December 7, and was judged to be a great success by those who observed it, with the attacking troops of the 11th Airborne Division overwhelming the defending forces of the 17th Airborne Division and capturing the Knollwood airport. McNair reported that the success of the manoeuvre pleased him, and highlighted the great improvements in airborne training that had occurred in the months between the end of Operation Husky and the Knollwood Manoeuvre. [ Huston, p. 137 ] Thanks to the success - or perhaps, more accurately failure - of the units of the 17th Airborne Division during the exercise, the airborne division as a concept for the American military was deemed to be effective and was allowed to remain.

The Battle of the Bulge

After participating in the Knollwood Manoeuvre, the division was shipped overseas to Britain, ultimately coming under the operational control of XVIII Airborne Corps under Major-General Matthew Ridgway which commanded all Allied airborne formations. The corps itself came under the command of the First Allied Airborne Army and Major-General Lewis H. Brereton on August 2, 1944. [ Flanagan, p. 204 ] However, despite being a part of XVIII Airborne Corps and thus technically available to participate in Operation Market-Garden, the division was eventually not chosen to take part in the large-scale airborne operation which attempted to seize several bridges through Holland to allow the Allied armies to bypass the Rhine river and enter Germany. It was passed over for the operation primarily because the division had only recently arrived in Britain from the United States, and was still sorting out its combat equipment and logistical abilities when XVIII Airborne Corps was required to take part in Operation Market-Garden. [ Flanagan, p. 245 ] The division remained in Britain whilst Operation Market-Garden occurred, eventually joining the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions, who remained stationed in Europe, as the theater reserve for General Eisenhower as the Allies continued their advance towards the German frontier. On the afternoon of December 17, the three divisions were ordered to be shipped immediately to the Ardennes, with orders to engage the German forces who had launched an offensive in the region. This offensive was quickly to become known as the Battle of the Bulge [ Flanagan, p. 268 ] However, whilst the other two airborne divisions were able to immediately make their way to the Ardennes, bad weather prevented the 17th from taking off from where they were stationed in Britain until December 23, when the division finally landed in France and moved to an assembly area near Rheims. On Christmas Day, the division was attached to the US Third Army and ordered to assume a thirty-mile long defensive position that ran along the Meuse River. [ Flanagan, p. 281 ]

The airborne troops did not engage any German forces, and by New Years Day the division was moved by truck to a position southwest of Bastogne, and then to the village of Morhet, arriving on January 3, 1945. The division relieved the 11th Armored Division which had occupied the village prior to their arrival, and were then attached to the Third Army under General George S. Patton. Devlin, p. 546 ] The division entered combat for the first time on January 4, when it was ordered by General Patton to accompany the 87th Infantry Division to seize a number of key towns to the west of Bastogne and stop an attempt by German forces to isolate Bastogne for a second time after it had been relieved by the Third Army on December 26. The 194th Glider Infantry Regiment and 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment lead the assault, with the 193rd Glider Infantry Unit and 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment remaining in reserve to deal with any German armoured counter-attacks. The division engaged German forces, including infantry and armour, in an attempt to secure a narrow, high-rimmed road to the north-west of Bastogne in a battle that later historians dubbed 'The Battle of Dead Man's Ridge', succeeding after a fierce three-day battle in which the division suffered nearly a thousand casualties. [ Flanagan, p. 282 ] It was during the opening stages of this battle that the division earnt its first Medal of Honor, when Sergeant Isadore S. Jachman of the 513th PIR engaged and destroyed two German tanks under heavy enemy fire before being killed by machine-gun fire as the German armoured column retreated. Flanagan, p. 283 ] After several more days of heavy fighting, the division broke through German lines and forced the German forces to retreat, capturing several vital towns before linking up with a patrol from the British 51st Highland Division. Shortly after this the entire division was withdrawn from the front and taken by truck to Luxembourg, effectively ending their participation in the Ardennes campaign.

Operation Varsity


After participating in the Battle of the Bulge, the division remained behind the front-lines as a reserve formation and theater reserve, whilst the Allies continued their advance towards the German interior. However, even as the division rested and trained, it had already been selected to take part in a highly ambitious airborne operation, which its planners had code-named Operation Eclipse. This operation, which got to such an advanced stage that plans had been created and divisional commanders briefed, called for the 17th and 82nd Airborne Divisions, along with a brigade from the 6th Airborne Division, to be dropped in daylight in and around Berlin to capture Adolf Hitler and bring the conflict to an end.. Flanagan, p. 285 ] The operation received the support of General Henry H. Arnold, the Chief of the United States Army Air Corps, but planning ended on March 28, when General Dwight D. Eisenhower sent a message to Marshal Joseph Stalin indicating that the Allied armies would not attempt to capture Berlin, thereby making Eclipse obsolete. Eclipse and several other similarly ambitious airborne operations came to nothing, but in February the division finally received word that it would be involved in an Allied airborne operation to cross the River Rhine in support of 21st Army Group that would take place during March. [ Devlin, p. 255 ]

By March 1945, the Allies had advanced into Germany and had reached the River Rhine. The Rhine was a formidable natural obstacle to the Allied advance,cite web |url=http://www.armyhistory.org/armyhistorical.aspx?pgID=1017&id=139&exCompID=177 |title= Operation Varsity: The Last Airborne Deployment of World War II |accessdate=2008-05-01 |author= Matthew J. Seelinger|year= 2007|work= |publisher=Army Historical Research] but if breached would allow the Allies to access the North German Plain and ultimately advance on Berlin and other major cities in Northern Germany. Following the 'Broad Front Approach' laid out by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force, it was decided to attempt to breach the Rhine in several areas. [Saunders, Tim, p. 41 ] Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, commanding the British 21st Army Group devised a plan to allow the forces under his command to breach the Rhine, which he entitled Operation Plunder, and which was subsequently authorized by Eisenhower. Plunder envisioned the British Second Army, under Lieutenant-General Sir Miles Dempsey and the U.S. Ninth Army under Lieutenant General William Simpson crossing the Rhine at Rees, Wesel, and an area south of the Lippe Canal. To ensure that the operation was a success, Montgomery insisted that an airborne component was inserted into the plans for the operation to support the amphibious assaults that would take place, which was code-named Operation Varsity. [Devlin, p. 258-259] Three airborne divisions were initially chosen to take part in Varsity, these being the British 6th Airborne Division, the US 13th Airborne Division and the 17th Airborne Division, all of which were assigned to the US XVIII Airborne Corps. [Devlin, p. 259]

Quote box
quote = ”To disrupt the hostile defence of the RHINE in the WESEL sector by the seizure of key terrain by airborne attack, in order [...] to facilitate the further offensive operations of the SECOND ARMY."
source = [Operational orders for 6th and 17th Airborne Divisions] [ The Parachute Regiment and Airborne Forces Museum, File 74 – "Summary Of Ground Forces Participation In Operation “Varsity”", p. 1 ]
width = 35%
align = left

However, as planning for Operation Varsity began, it soon became obvious that there was a lack of suitable transport aircraft to transport all three of the airborne divisions proposed for the operation. [ Clay, p. 440 ] As such the 13th Airborne Division was dropped from the operational plan, primarily because it had no combat experience, whereas the 6th Airborne Division had participated in Operation Tonga, the British airborne landings during Operation Neptune, and the 17th had seen combat in the Ardennes. [ Clay, p. 440 ] The plan for the operation was therefore altered to accommodate the two remaining airborne divisions, the British 6th Airborne and the US 17th Airborne Division. This would be the first combat operation the 17th would take part in, and indeed would be its only before it was disbanded. The two airborne divisions would be dropped behind German lines, with their objective to land around Wesel and disrupt enemy defences in order to aid the advance of the British Second Army. To achieve this, both divisions would be dropped near the town of Hamminkeln, and were tasked with a number of objectives; they were to seize the Diersfordter Wald, a forest that overlooked the Rhine and had a road linking several towns together; several bridges over a smaller waterway, the River Ijssel, were to be seized to facilitate the advance; and the town of Hamminkeln was to be captured. [Jewell, p27] Once these objectives were taken, the airborne troops would consolidate their positions and await the arrival of Allied ground forces, defending the territory captured against the German forces known to be in the area.

The plan for the operation called for the 17th to land its units in the southern portion of the area chosen for the operation, engaging the German forces that were defending the area, securing the Diersfordterwald Forest which dominated the surrounding area and capturing three bridges that spanned the River Ijssel so that the Allied ground forces could use them to advance into the North German Plain. [ Harclerode, p. 551 ] It would then hold the territory it had captured until it linked up units from the British 6th Airborne Division, which would land in the northern section of the operational area, and finally advance alongside 21st Army Group once the Allied ground forces had made contact with the airborne forces. To avoid the heavy casualties incurred by the British 1st Airborne Division that had occurred during Operation Market-Garden, both Allied airborne divisions would only be dropped after Allied ground units had crossed the Rhine and secured crossings; the two divisions would also be dropped only a relatively short distance behind German lines, to ensure that reinforcements would be able to link up with them after only a few hours and they would not be isolated. [ Jewell, p. 28 ]

The Battle

Operation Plunder began on at 9pm of March 23 after a week-long aerial bombardment of Luftwaffe airfields and the German transport system, involving more than ten thousand Allied aircraft. [ O'Neill, p. 299 ] By the early hours of March 24 units of 21st Army Group had crossed the Rhine against heavy German opposition and secured several crossings on the eastern bank of the river.Tugwell, p. 273] In the first few hours of the 24th, the transport aircraft carrying the two airborne divisions that formed Operation Varsity began to take off from airbases in England and France and began to rendezvous over Brussels, before turning north-east for the Rhine dropping zones. The airlift consisted of 541 transport aircraft containing airborne troops, and a further 1,050 troop-carriers towing 1, 350 gliders. The 17th Airborne Division consisted of 9, 387 personnel, who were transported in 836 C-47 Dakota transports, 72 C-46 Commando transports, and more than 900 Waco CG-4A gliders. [cite web |url=http://www.historynet.com/operation-varsity-allied-airborne-assault-over-the-rhine-river.htm |title= Operation Varsity: Allied Airborne Assault Over The Rhine|accessdate=2008-05-01 |author= Hagerman, Bart|date= 2006-06-12|work= |publisher= World War II Magazine] At 10am on the morning of the 24th, the first Allied airborne units began to land on German soil on the eastern bank of the Rhine, some thirteen hours after the Allied assault had begun.

The 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment, under the command of Colonel Edson Raff, was the lead assault formation for the 17th Airborne Division, and was consequently the first US airborne unit to land as part of Operation Varsity. The entire Regiment was meant to be dropped in Drop-Zone W, a clearing two miles north of Wesel; however, excessive ground haze confused the pilots of the transport aircraft carrying the Regiment, and as such when the Regiment dropped it split into two halves.Devlin, p. 617] Colonel Raff and approximately 690 of his paratroopers landed north-west of the Drop-Zone near the town of Diersfordt, with the rest of the Regiment successfully landing in Drop-Zone W. The Colonel rallied his separated paratroopers and led them to Drop-Zone W, engaging a battery of German artillery en-route, killing or capturing the artillery crews before reuniting with the rest of the Regiment. By two o'clock in the afternoon, the 507th had secured all of its objectives and cleared the area around Diersfordt, having engaged numerous German troops and also knocked out a German tank.Devlin, p. 619] The actions of the regiment during the initial landing also gained the division its second Medal of Honor, when Private George J. Peters posthumously received the award after charging a German machine-gun nest and eliminating it with rifle fire and grenades, allowing his fellow paratroopers to gather their equipment and capture the regiments first objective. [cite web |url=http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/wwII-m-s.html|title= Medal of Honor Recipients World War II (M-S)|accessdate=2008-05-24 |author= United States Army, Centre of Military History|date= 2007-07-16|work= |publisher= United States Army]

The 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment was the second US airborne unit to land after the 507th, under the command of Colonel James Coutts. En-route to the Drop-Zone, the transport aircraft containing the Regiment had the misfortune to pass through a belt of German anti-aircraft weapons, losing twenty-two of the C-46 transport aircraft and damaging a further thirty-eight. [Devlin, p. 620] Just as the 507th had, the 513th also suffered from pilot error due to the ground haze, and as such the Regiment actually missed their designated Drop-Zone, DZ X, and were dropped on one of the Landing-Zones designated for the British 6th Airlanding Brigade. However, despite this inaccuracy the paratroopers swiftly rallied and aided the British glider-borne troops who were landing simultaneously, eliminating several German artillery batteries which were covering the area.Tugwell, p. 274] Once the German troops in the area had been eliminated, a combined force of American and British airborne troops stormed Hamminkeln and secured that town. Devlin, p. 621] By 2pm in the afternoon, Colonel Coutts reported to the Divisional Headquarters that the 513th had secured all of its objectives, having knocked out two tanks and two complete regiments of artillery during their assault. During its attempts to secure its objectives, the regiment also gained a third Medal of Honor for the division when Private First Class Stuart S. Stryker posthumously received the award after leading a charge against a German machine-gun nest, creating a distraction to allow the rest of his platoon to capture the fortified position the machine-gun was situated in. [cite web |url=http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/wwII-m-s.html|title= Medal of Honor Recipients World War II (M-S)|accessdate=2008-05-24 |author= United States Army, Centre of Military History|date= 2007-07-16|work= |publisher= United States Army]

The third component of the 17th Airborne Division to take part in the operation was the 194th Glider Infantry Regiment, under the command of Colonel James Pierce.Devlin, p. 624] The Regiment landed accurately in Landing-Zone S, but their gliders and the aircraft that pulled them took heavy casualties; twelve C-47 transports were lost due to anti-aircraft fire, and a further one hundred and forty were damaged by the same fire. The Regiment landed in the midst of a number of German artillery batteries that were engaging Allied ground forces crossing the Rhine, and as such many of the Gliders were engaged by German artillery pieces which had their barrels lowered for direct-fire. However, these artillery batteries and their crews were defeated by the glider-borne troops, and the Regiment was soon able to report that its objectives had been secured, having destroyed forty-two artillery pieces, ten tanks, two mobile-flak wagons and five self-propelled guns.


Operation Varsity was a successful large-scale airborne operation. All of the objectives that the airborne troops of the 17th had been tasked with had been captured and held, usually within only a few hours of the operation beginning. The bridges over the Ijssel had been successfully captured, although one later had to be destroyed to prevent its capture by counter-attacking German forces. The Diersfordter Forest had been cleared of enemy troops, and the roads through which the Germans might have routed reinforcements against the advance had been cut by airborne troops. [ Otway, p. 564 ] By nightfall of the 24th 15th (Scottish) Infantry Division had joined up with elements of 6th Airborne, and by midnight the first light bridge was across the Rhine. By the 27th twelve bridges suitable for heavy armour had been installed over the Rhine and the Allies had fourteen divisions on the east bank of the river which had penetrated up to ten miles.Fraser, p. 392] The division also gained its fourth Medal of Honor in the days following Operation Varsity, when Technical Sergeant Clinton M. Hedrick of the 194th Glider Infantry Regiment received the award posthumously after aiding in the capture of Lembeck Castle, which had been turned into a fortified position by the Germans. [cite web |url=http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/wwII-g-l.html|title= Medal of Honor Recipients World War II (G-L)|accessdate=2008-05-24 |author= United States Army, Centre of Military History|date= 2007-07-16|work= |publisher= United States Army] In terms of casualties, the 17th suffered a total of 1, 346 casualties between 24 and 29 March, when Operation Plunder came to an end. [Ellis, p. 294]


With the end of Operation Varsity, the 17th Airborne Division had seen its last combat operation. The division had served for combat for sixty-five days in Europe as it participated in the Ardennes campaign, Operation Varsity and then the advance through Northern Germany, but in that short period of time it had seen 1, 314 men killed in action and 4, 904 men wounded or otherwise injured in action. Flanagan, p. 344 ] When Germany unconditionally surrendered on May 7, 1945, the division was conducting occupation duties in Northern Germany, which it continued to do until it was relieved by British troops on 14 June. From that date, the division was split up and its component units attached to other airborne divisions, either to the 82nd Airborne in Berlin or to the 13th Airborne which was preparing to participate in the invasion of Japan. When Japan surrendered, all of the divisions units came back to their parent formation and the division as a whole moved to Camp Myles Standish in Taunton, Massachusetts, being officially deactivated on September 16, 1945. The formation was to be reactivated on July 6, 1948 as a training division, but on June 19, 1949 it was once again deactivated, this time for good.

Divisional Order of Battle

Units of the 17th Airborne Division during World War II included:
*Division Headquarters
*193rd Glider Infantry Regiment (disbanded March 1 1945)
*194th Glider Infantry Regiment
*507th Parachute Infantry Regiment (attached August 27 1944 to March 1, 1945, thereafter assigned)
*513th Parachute Infantry Regiment (replaced 517th Parachute Infantry Regiment on March 10 1944)
*517th Parachute Infantry Regiment (relieved March 10 1944 and replaced by the 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment)
*Division Artillery
**464th Parachute Field Artillery Battalion (75mm) (assigned June 4, 1945)
**466th Parachute Field Artillery Battalion (75mm)
**680th Glider Field Artillery Battalion (75mm)
**681st Glider Field Artillery Battalion (75mm)
*139th Airborne Engineer Battalion
*155th Airborne Antiaircraft Battalion
*224th Airborne Medical Company
*17th Parachute Maintenance Company
*Headquarters Special Troops
**Headquarters Company, 17th Airborne Division
**Military Police Platoon
**717th Airborne Ordnance Maintenance Company
**517th Airborne Signal Company
**411th Airborne Quartermaster Company
**Band (assigned March 1, 1945)
**Reconnaissance Platoon (assigned March 1, 1945)
*550th Airborne Infantry Battalion (not assigned; under division operational control during the Ardennes Offensive) [cite web |url=http://www.history.army.mil/documents/eto-ob/17ABD-ETO.htm |title= 17th Airborne Division |accessdate=2008-05-14 |author= US Army Centre of Military History|year= 2008|work= |publisher=US Army Centre of Military History]



*cite book
last = Blair
first = Clay
title = Ridgway’s Paratroopers - The American Airborne In World War II
publisher = The Dial Press
year = 1985
isbn = 1-55750-299-4

*cite book
last = Devlin
first = Gerard M.
title = "Paratrooper - The Saga Of Parachute And Glider Combat Troops During World War II
publisher = Robson Books
year = 1979
isbn = 0-31259-652-9

*cite book| first=L.S.|last=Major Ellis|title=Victory in the West: The Defeat of Germany, Official Campaign History Volume II|series=History of the Second World War: United Kingdom Military|publisher=Naval & Military Press Ltd|year=2004|origdate=1968|isbn=1-84574-059-9
*cite book
last = Fraser
first = David
title = And We Shall Shock Them: The British Army in the Second World War
publisher = Phoenix
year = 1999
isbn = 0-30435-233-0

*cite book
last = Flanagan
first = E.M. Jr
title = Airborne - A Combat History Of American Airborne Forces
publisher = The Random House Publishing Group
year = 2002
isbn = 0-89141-688-9

*cite book
last = Harclerode
first = Peter
title = Wings Of War – Airborne Warfare 1918-1945
publisher = Weidenfeld & Nicolson
year = 2005
isbn = 0-30436-730-3

*cite book
last = Huston
first = James A.
title = Out Of The Blue - U.S Army Airborne Operations In World War II
publisher = Purdue University Press
year = 1998
isbn = 1-55753-148-X

*cite book
last = Jewell
first = Brian
title = ”Over The Rhine” – The Last Days Of War In Europe
publisher = Spellmount Ltd
year = 1985
isbn = 0-87052-128-4

*cite book
last = O'Neill
first = N.C. (eds.)
title = Odhams History of the Second World War: Volume II
publisher = Odhams Press Limited
year = 1951
isbn =

*cite book
last = Otway
first = Lieutenant-Colonel T.B.H
title = The Second World War 1939-1945 Army - Airborne Forces
publisher = Imperial War Museum
year = 1990
isbn = 0-90162-75-77

*cite book
last = Rawson
first = Andrew
title = Rhine Crossing: Operation VARSITY - 30th and 79th US Divisions and 17th US Airborne Division
publisher = Pen & Sword Military
year = 2006
isbn = 1-84415-232-4

*cite book
last = Saunders
first = Hilary St. George
title = The Red Beret – The Story Of The Parachute Regiment 1940-1945
publisher = White Lion Publishers Ltd
year = 1972
isbn = 0-85617-823-3

*cite book| first=Tim|last=Saunders|title=Operation Plunder: The British & Canadian Rhine Crossing|series=|publisher=Leo Cooper Ltd|year=2006|origdate=|isbn=1-84415-221-9
*cite book
last = Tugwell
first = Maurice
title = Airborne To Battle - A History Of Airborne Warfare 1918-1971
publisher = William Kimber & Co Ltd
year = 1971
isbn = 0-71830-262-1

External links

*cite web
last =Hagerman
first =Bart
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =Operation Varsity: Allied Airborne Assault Over The Rhine
work =
publisher =World War II Magazine
date =
url =http://www.historynet.com/operation-varsity-allied-airborne-assault-over-the-rhine-river.htm
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-04-28

*cite web
last =Ministry of Defense
first =
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =Operation Varsity - The Rhine Crossing
work =
publisher =British Army/The Parachute Regiment
date =
url =http://www.army.mod.uk/para/history/rhine.htm
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-04-28

*cite web
last =Murray
first =Williamson
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =Airborne Operations During World War II
work =
publisher =World War II Magazine
date =
url =http://www.historynet.com/airborne-operations-during-world-war-ii.htm/
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-04-28

*cite web
last =Pogue
first =Forrest C.
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =CHAPTER XXI - The Battle for the Rhineland
work =
publisher =HyperWar
date =
url =http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USA/USA-E-Supreme/USA-E-Supreme-21.html
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-04-28

*cite web
last =Seelinger
first =Matthew J.
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =Operation Varsity: The Last Airborne Deployment of World War II
work =
publisher =Army Historical Foundation
date =
url = http://www.armyhistory.org/armyhistorical.aspx?pgID=1017&id=139&exCompID=177
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-04-28

*cite web
last =United States Army
first =Centre of Military History
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =17th Airborne Division
work =
publisher =US Army Centre of Military History
date =
url =http://www.history.army.mil/documents/eto-ob/17ABD-ETO.htm
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-05-14

*cite web
last =United States Army
first =Centre of Military History
authorlink =
coauthors =
title =Medal of Honor Recipients - World War II (G-L)
work =
publisher =US Army Centre of Military History
date =
url =http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/wwII-g-l.html
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2008-05-24

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