Crossing the Canal du Nord: the ‘linchpin’ of the Hindenburg Line

After crashing the Drocourt-Quéant Line on 2 September, the Canadian Corps could take a well-deserved rest and begin preparations for their next obstacle: The Canal du Nord. While allied forces continued their operations throughout September, Lieutenant General Sir Arthur Currie needed to develop a strategy to cross the heavily fortified canal where enemy positions were strong and bristling with machine guns.

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The “Back-Bone” of German Resistance: Advance near Arras and the Breaking of the Drocourt-Quéant Line

Following a successful victory at Amiens, the Canadian Corps now turned its attention towards the northern hinge of the heavily fortified Hindenburg Line, the Drocourt-Quéant Line. Unlike Amiens, where Canadians could rely on the element of surprise and an ill-prepared German defense, the Arras sector, and more specifically, the D-Q Line, was fully manned and well reinforced. With the German Army expecting an attack, the Allied strategy was to launch a successive wave of frontal attacks to exhaust and destabilize the enemy troops.

Continue reading “The “Back-Bone” of German Resistance: Advance near Arras and the Breaking of the Drocourt-Quéant Line”