By Anthony Farrar Hockley
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Extra resources for Airborne Carpet Operation Market Garden
Patton's forces were advancing and he was not going to stop them. Montgomery too must keep up the pressure within the limits of the supplies he was receiving. In one particular, however, the Supreme Commander was prepared to give all support to Montgomery's plan: he should mount as soon as possible 'Market Garden', the airborne operation. A bridgehead across the Rhine would of course be advantageous and. as a secondary aspect, should permit allied troops to capture the V2 sites from which Hitler was launching freethe second of his flight rockets, 'secret' bombing weapons, against the south and east of England.
At Browning's instigation, a standard procedure had been adopted for all allied airborne troops so that the Royal Air Force could readily and did - exercise with American troops, the United States Army Air Corps with British. The 82nd and 101st Divisions had much in common, the latter having been formed from a cadre of the first. The commander of the 82nd was Brigadier-General Jim Gavin, a former enlisted man, a graduate of West Point and a rising star in the allied forces. Aged 37, he had been a captain in 1941, a volunteer member of the Provisional Parachute Group at Fort Benning, Georgia.
So the commanders parted. The Field-Marshal flew back to his headquarters assured of support to mount the airborne operation, determined in his own heart to strike into and through the Ruhr. At the time of his appointment to command the airborne army, General Brereton had a wide range of experience in his profession. Originally a naval officer, he transferred to the United States Army and its infant flying section prior to the First World War. As an aviator, he flew against the Germans when the American Expeditionary Force came to France in 1917.
Airborne Carpet Operation Market Garden by Anthony Farrar Hockley