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regimemal commanders

launched their

remaining forces. While their encircled 5iSLCr bolltal

ioo!s

for !heir vcry survival. each n:gimcnl's

reinrortemenU auemptcd 10 bn:ak through German dcfCflSd and cffoct linkup. The: naL open IUlureofthe surroundin" tCmlin, however, did nQII suppa" thc anacking forces. Vinually deWlid of cover and con ceal"....,nt. the temin provided the Gelman dcrenden with c.cellcnt fields of filt'.1IId C)b&e:rvalion.. Hence. the uposcd lucking American IIOOJl' _It; foro::d 10

Lhrough "dense IwIds of IlUlom'tie and indi rect fire," (28)

1lN: Rangcn' suppanlng .t\.Ock along Ihe Conca

Faminamona-Cistema

was also failing. Ap

pnuimatcly 04IS the 4Lh Ihlt:llion began eneounler

ing dl/i-in enemy posilions .nd heavy din::a md indirect filt'. As the Rangcrl' Incmptcd 10 push for· ward, Ihey cfICO\Inlcred I mad block and nmking

minefields, Ily covering this fixing

with in

lense and accume fire, German d<;fcno;kn for over an hour pm'enrcd. a slOCCIessful tJrcach. 1'11is cicily en abled en:my foroe!O III esrlblish and reinforce

defensive

atonl: lhe RiUlgen' direction or

auack.

Consequently, funher American cff(lru: 10

clear the road f"OVcd hil:h1y ineffective.

Throughoul lhe inilial cngagcTmnts of the IWO inf;sn\ry It'glments and 4th Ranger Baltallon. lhe 3d Division's main eITon wminucd with Its planned infillr.uiQll. While their counterparts foughtlnlen!;C

baliles 10 their RatUllions moved

and rear. the 151 and 3d Ranger along the Panlano Canal.

Passing din:ctJy through and around

Ger·

man lrOOp concmtr.llions, the Rangen' tight column form;1\ionw-ulIDtengagcdbycnemydc:fcndc:n. During this "roven" movemcnllhe main attack forte cnccd Iwo major hreaks in conlacl,the: finll when the

3d and lSI OanaJinns became

1lN: seC(lOd

breD; oct1Irred while allempting 10 r=lIve the initial problem. 8y063O lead elements ofthe Iwo-baHII;';" foree were approximately 1,300 meters SOUlhcut of Clstcma and preparing to cros.t Highw.y 7.

Operating under stricl T3(1io

sik:na:, the

main atlxk fora: beean the nnOlJ legoflhc: infiltration by 0630. Arter passinr: Ihrougli a promInent drainage dilCli immedIately ClSI ofllighway 7.the lSi Rltlllion

began 10

north across a large open lrea. To its

n:ar the 3-d Ranalion oontin",ed \0 push forward a10ng

the drainage ditch.

Unknown 10 the atlacking Rangel!., the German dc:fcndc:n;l'Iad lfIticip;!:\ed the: 3-d Division's plan and, sulRquently, laken steps 10 counlcr.1ct il effettJvely.

"

(29) 8y

07001hc IWO Ran\:erbanalions

wert within awclL-clcfcndcd enemy cngagCTmnt arn. Wilhoul wlmlng the awakening dlwn beCartfe a bril liant namc from 1\llOmatic _apons.lank maln gum, II1d dilttl-fire artillery. From conrn:te SlIUCl\In:5 and dUG-in posilions ea:ll of the dralnagc dllch, German ddcnden began ppurlng errOClivc fire into the 3d Ranger U;ut;i\ion. While: the American soldicrt uri· tnled their weapons 10 this threat. additional Gennan tanks lflii dismounted Infantry bel'" alll(:king from the west and southwest. Wilhin nncen minutes the 3d Ball.lUon completely surrounded by an impene trable wall of exploding S1cel fragments and jacketed

bo.il1Cl$,

AI 3d BauOlJion soldiers valiarlLly bauled the enemy's numerically superiQr forces, the 1st 8at tallQrl cnrninucd 10 pn:ss forward loward OStcml,

Appmxlmalcly 800 melert

of lheir

objectlvc, lhcsc R.:Inj;Crt met the same fate as lheir comlldcs in thc3d 8atlollion. From thecity'ssouthem oulskirts lId surrounding ICmln. a)fI(lI:a1c:d Gennan defendert eng<lged the I\mericam aefOSJ well-defined

S<.X:1001 of nre.

Complelely

01'1 coverless

leITain,

Haltalioo soldicrs dropped 10 the ground

and began returning nrc. By radio, Ranger leaders SOIbmitled immediate supprt'S:SiyC fin: n:questS 10 the I'taimental oommand post. AlthouGh American anil· !cry and monars Quickly Jt'SPOOdc:d, Gennan defen·

siYC p!)Silions

exccllcnl cover from indilttt

fin:: weapoos-cspecinll y the RanJ:efll' supponing 4.2- inch monan. Consequently, while Irmon:d Gennan

forea

for Ig)IIIplcternciKlemenl. effec

live enemy Bal1alion. llIc

Ii"

, rominuc:d 10 rain down 01'1 the lSi

rellimental cummandc:r, Cnl. Wit,

lilll1 O. Darby,

the desperate Situation

Cl.)I1Jronting his main altack force. (30) Unfortunately.

given the L11lC1peclCd

of Gennan resistance,

the necessary n.:inrorecmcnllt wen: unable 10 assist Colonel Darby's beleagucn:d banal ions.

mately 4,500 melen

or Cisterna a well·

defended German obslaclc and mincncld syslem blocked further 41h Ranger Ballallon At 0830 Cannon Company and the attached lri-oc:

slroyerpbloon wen: directed

and. subsequently,

fnur

\0

the4th Baltalion 10 intense enemy

nn:: and concc;i\cd anlilrmor mines. Even afICTlhe 3d

DiYisillf1 oommander n:ICI$':d

nf the divi·

sion'l reserve. the RanlCtS' SlIpponing atUlCk was unable to lRak through Gcnnan defensive posiliOrtS, Meanwhile, the 7th and ISth lnflll\try Regiments'

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