With the SAS: Across the Rhine
Into the Heart of Hitler's Third Reich
Imprint: Frontline Books
248 Pages, 6 x 9.25 in, 16 black and white illustrations
- August 2020
- In Stock
The author takes us back to his time employed with the 79th armored Division (the famous ‘Hobart’s Funnies’) preparing for D-Day and his desire for more exciting action, which led first to the Parachute Regiment and then the SAS. Whilst we learn a little of his time with the maquis, the main focus of the story is his part in Operation Archway. A British special forces mission which involved the 1st and 2nd Special Air Service Regiments acting in support of the advance of Field Marshal Sir Bernard Montgomery's Allied 21st Army Group in operations Varsity and Plunder, this crossing of the Rhine was one of the largest and most diverse operations ever carried out by the SAS.
In this offensive, the SAS teams were thrust deep into German territory, often having to battle their way through the enemy lines to get back to safety. ‘I quickly learned that there was no way to control an SAS battle,’ Wellsted wrote of his first major encounter in charge of a patrol. ‘The din was deafening – seventy odd Vickers and half a dozen Brownings all chattering together. The screech of ricochets and the fire of the enemy made my voice sound like the squeak of a mouse against a church organ. I was helpless.’
In one of these encounters, as the war was drawing to a close, Wellsted’s troop found itself surrounded. In the ensuing firefight, Wellsted was wounded, bringing his active front line career to an end.
"...the reader is presented a human commander making due to the best of his abilities. Ultimately, the book is a reminder that war is a human business and special operations forces are comprised of men and women with the same burdens, strains, and fears as others." ~Special Operations Journal
"In addition to being a well written personal account, one is mesmerized by the dual role [the author]so astonishingly performed, thereby allowing him to survive his near daily encounters with the enemy." ~ARGunners.com