Operation Sting 2018 – Panzers on the Elsenborn

Operation Sting breaks down scoring into four categories; battle, appearance, sportsmanship and theme. Part of the theme score is a written army background explaining the historical context for your platoon and the units you picked.

Panzers on the Elsenborn

On Dec. 18, 1944 the German 506th Heavy Antitank Battalion unleashed the state-of-the-art Jagdpanther tank destroyer on the Allied lines at Elsenborn, Belgium in the Ardennes forest. During an assault that lasted all day and all night the Germans failed to overtake the U.S. defenders despite repeated infantry and assault gun thrusts supported by Nebelwerfer bombardments.

At the close of the ten-day battle, Elsenborn Ridge was the only sector of the American front where the Germans failed to advance during the Battle of the Bulge.

To represent the German 506th Heavy Antitank Battalion I centered my platoon around a Jagdpanther tank destroyer. The supporting German artillery is represented by a Nebelwerfer and medium mortar. Led by a veteran 2nd Lt, the infantry that supported the assault are three squads of SS supplied with a host of late-war equipment including assault rifles, multiple LMGs and Panzerfausts. A sniper and MMG team provide fire support to the advancing infantry with a motorcycle to scout ahead for the Jagdpanther.

The paint scheme was selected as a mix of late-war camouflage patterns and winter uniforms. The vehicles are painted with a winter white wash to represent the in-the-field modifications made by vehicle crews during the Battle of the Bulge.

My objective marker is a knocked-out half-track with a bailed-out crew. This vehicle would have been used to assess the strength of the enemy position and clearly got a bit too close. The rest of the platoon is moving up in attack to both support the surviving crew and to assault the U.S. defenses.

Operation Sting is in three days, and I’ve got a long way to go. Wish me luck! 

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