Patton's Iron Cavalry - The Impact of the Mechanized Cavalry on the U.S. Third Army Page: 55
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number for a squadron that only numbered just over 700 total. As stated earlier, a casualty rate
ofjust under 4% is not bad at all for such a dangerous assault, but it could have been much
worse. Wincheringen was not part of the main German defensive belt, but rather part of its
security screen in front of the Siegfried Line. Additionally, the Dragoons had conducted a
thorough reconnaissance of the town, having lived across the river from it for over a month.
Thus, the cavalry were tasked with an objective well within their abilities - the removal of a
small strongpoint forward of the main German defensive belt. Had they been required to conduct
an assault to the north with the rest of the corps, casualties would have been much higher, and
the cavalry would not had the combat power to persist in the face of heavy casualties.
With the success of the attack on Wincheringen, the Dragoons were now able to focus
more of their attention to the northeast, as XX Corps was now coming alongside their eastern
flank. This shift allowed the Dragoons to concentrate more combat power along the remaining
length of their screen, in preparation for combat operations across the Sauer River. On 21
February, the 808th TD Battalion was attached to the 76th ID, but the 691st TD battalion was sent
to TF Reed to make good its absence."118 Additionally, on 23 February, XII Corps took the
1258th Combat Engineer Battalion away from the task force, leaving its attachments at one
combat engineer battalion, one TD battalion, a company of Belgian Fusiliers, and two battalions
of field artillery in direct support.119
By 2 March, TF Reed's screen along the Moselle River was no longer necessary, and XII
Corps removed all attachments of the group, and then attached the group with its two remaining
squadrons to the 76th ID.120 The 76th ID had already crossed the Sauer River and was now
118 2nd Cavalry Group After Action Report, February 1945," 21 February.
19 Ibid., 23 February.
120 2nd Cavalry Association, The Ghosts of Patton's Third Army- A History of the Second U.S. Cavalry,
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Nance, William Stuart. Patton's Iron Cavalry - The Impact of the Mechanized Cavalry on the U.S. Third Army, thesis, May 2011; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68023/m1/61/: accessed October 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .