History of War

FROM AMBUSH TO ATROCITY

On 17 December 1944, at the crossroads hamlet of Baugnez around two miles from Malmedy, a small column from Battery B, 285th Field Artillery Observations Battalion of the 7th Armored was spotted by a group of German tanks and half-tracks from Kampfgruppe Peiper. The Germans attacked, taking out the front and rear trucks to prevent escape and then raking the American column with machine gun fire and mortar shells. Several trucks exploded and more crashed into ditches as they tried to get away. Taking cover behind stricken trucks and in ditches, the Americans fought back as best they could.

SS-Obersturmbannfuhrer Peiper himself arrived at the skirmish driving an American jeep. Rapid progress and good

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