US Army surprised at Sidi Bou Zid
14th February 1943: Complacent US Army frontline unravelled by surprise Wehrmacht attack towards the Kasserine Pass
Sooner or later, the raw U.S. forces that had arrived in North Africa with the Torch landings were going to come up against some of the most experienced fighting troops in the world.
The 21st Panzer Division had been in the Desert since March 1941, already veterans of the Blitzkrieg in Poland and France, and knew every tactical trick in the book and more. They also had some formidable weapons. They were long experienced in drawing the enemy onto well-dug-in 88mm guns. Now that gun, capable of penetrating the armour of a Sherman tank from over a mile away, was also mounted on their latest tank, the Tiger 1.
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