Cadets Visit the Belgian Fort of Eben Emael
Cadets on the Operation Market-Garden Staff Ride traveled to the Belgian fort of Eben Emael to study the German use of airborne forces to capture this fort in May 1940 and how this provided the impetus for the increased use of airborne forces by both sides during WWII. The cadets then traveled north along the route used by the British XXX Corps during their attack out of the Neerpelt bridgehead on 17 September 1944 and analyzed the conduct of XXX Corps and the German forces opposing them during the first two crucial days of the operation. This portion concluded with a visit to a Commonwealth War Cemetery where 220 British soldiers killed during Operation Market-Garden and subsequent operations were buried. This allowed the cadets to compare the memorialization of war dead between the Americans and the British and provided a stark reminder of the heavy fighting endured by XXX Corps in their attacks up what became known as "Hell's Highway."