Sophie (aged 7) and Ellie (aged 5) want to know if battles ever happened at Christmas so together we tell the story of the Battle of the Bulge in World War Two.
It is winter 1944. Allied troops are at the borders of Germany. Germany seems defeated. The allies are resting, preparing for the final push for Berlin in the Spring which will end World War Two. But Hitler has a plan of his own. He gathers his last tank army together in great secrecy. His tanks smash through woods called the Ardennes. The Battle of the Bulge has started.
The Americans are stunned. The weather is terrible so the Allied planes cannot help. German soldiers wearing American uniforms spread confusion behind Allied lines. German soldiers all kill captured American prisoners. But Hitler’s tanks are desperately short of petrol. They need to capture some of the Allied petrol to keep the attack going. But the allies keep blowing it up.
In the middle of the German advance is the town of Bastogne. The German tanks sweep past the town. But American paratroopers dig in around the town and hold it against all attacks – even on Christmas Day. This slows down the German advance. This gives the Americans time to bring their own tanks up. The weather also cleared and the Allied planes started bombing the German tanks. With one final throw of the dice the last German planes went into battle. But were shot down. Now Germany had lost her last tanks and her last planes. There was nothing to stop the Allies now.
A few months later Russia captured Berlin, Hitler killed himself and World War Two was over.
The girls also reflect on how at this Christmas we owe our freedoms to those brave American soldiers who fought for us in World War Two at the Battle of the Bulge at Christmas 1944
If you like this episode you might also like our other World War Two episodes.
Here we have an episode on Dunkirk 1940 in World War 2
Here we have an episode on the Battle of Britain 1940 in World War 2
Here we have an episode on Pearl Harbor 1941 in World War 2
Here we have an episode on VE Day 1945 at the end of World War 2
If you like listening to History Storytime you might like our Patrons’ Club. You get exclusive episodes, can choose and episode and be in an episode. We have a new episode out about the Siege of Bastogne which fits in well with this episode. We also have episodes about the Seven Wonders of the World and about the Bayeux Tapestry of 1066.