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Bulletins from the Front II (1918)

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6. Freiburger Tagblatt, No. 195, July 16, 1918:

WTB [Wolff Telegraph Service], General Headquarters, July 16. The army of Colonel General von Boehn has crossed the Marne between Jaulgonne and the east of Dormans. Early in the morning, military engineers got storm troops across the river and thus created the foundation for the day’s successes. Infantry stormed the steep slopes on the southern bank of the Marne. The construction of the bridge took place under their protection. In constant battle, we broke through the fiercely defended forest territory of the first enemy line and beat the enemy back to his rear line at Condé-la-Chapelle-Compliey-Mareuil. To the north of the Marne, we also took the first line from the French and the Italians between Ardre and the Marne.

7. Freiburger Tagblatt, No. 198, July 18, 1918:

WTB [Wolff Telegraph Service], General Headquarters, July 18. Battle has begun to flare up again between the Aisne and the Marne. There, the French have begun their long-awaited counteroffensive.

Through the use of their strongest squadrons and tanks, the French were able at first to suddenly break through our first infantry and artillery lines at certain points and to push back our lines. Furthermore, together with the available reserves, our trench divisions [Stellungsdivisionen] have thwarted an enemy breakthrough. Around noon, the French attack on the line to the southwest of Soissons-Neuilly and to the northwest of Chateau-Thierry was brought to a standstill. In the afternoon, forceful individual attacks by the enemy on our lines along the entire battlefront failed. Columns of enemy troops heading to the battlefield were targeted by our victorious fighter planes. Our fighter planes shot down 32 of the enemy’s airplanes.

Toward the southern front of the Marne, the French, after their failures on the 16th and 17th [of July], made only minor attacks to the northwest of Mareuil. They were warded off.

8. Freiburger Tagblatt, No. 201, July 22, 1918

WTB [Wolff Telegraph Service], General Headquarters, July 21. Between the Aisne and the Marne, the enemy sought to force a decision in the battle yesterday by deploying a number of new divisions. The enemy was repulsed. He suffered heavy losses. The peoples supporting the French [Hilfsvölker], the Algerians, Tunisians, Moroccans, and Senegalese Negroes, shouldered the main weight of the battle at the most difficult sites. The Senegalese battalions, which were divided among the French divisions as blocks of storm troops, followed behind the tanks ahead of the white Frenchmen. Americans – including black Americans – English, and Italians fought among the French.

[ . . . ] To the south of the Oureq, our counterattack also broke the enemy attack. To the northwest of Chateau-Thierry, in the past few [days], we have victoriously defended our positions, time and again, from heavy and repeated attacks by the Americans. The Americans have suffered especially heavy losses. In the night, undisturbed by the enemy, we moved back our defensive lines to the north and northeast of Chateau-Thierry.

9. Freiburger Tagblatt, No. 219, August 9, 1918:

WTB [Wolff Telegraph Service], General Headquarters, August 9. Between Ancre and Avre, the enemy attacked yesterday with strong forces. Assisted by a thick fog, he infiltrated our infantry and artillery lines with his tanks. To the north of the Somme, we beat back the enemy from our positions with our counterattack. Between the Somme and the Avre, we brought the enemy attack to a halt just to the east of the Morcourt-Harbornieres-Gaiz-Fresnoy-Contoire line. We have suffered losses in prisoners and ordnances. Among the prisoners we took were English, Australian, and Canadian auxiliary corps, and French.

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