January 30 This Day during the World War ll

January 30, 1945 – The Battle of Vianden took place November 19, 1944 in the small town of Vianden in northern Luxembourg, and was one of the most important battles of the Luxembourgish resistance against Nazi Germany during World War II. The Battle of Vianden remains notable for the heavy losses of the 250 Waffen-SS (23 killed), with only light casualties (1 dead, 6 wounded) of the 30 Luxembourgish militia members that defended the town. On November 15, Luxembourgish militia members spotted a German patrol between Wiesen and Bettel and decided to strike. 5 of the 11 German soldiers were killed by the Luxembourgers who themselves suffered no casualties. After this incident the German command decided to recapture once and for all the castle of Vianden, an important observation post from which the Luxembourgish resistance reported German troop movements to the Allied forces. The leader of the resistance, Victor Abens, evacuated the civilians of Vianden but nevertheless decided that his 30 militia men should remain in the town and in the castle to defend it. In the following days, the U.S. Army supported the Luxembourgers in Vianden with weapons and ammunition and left the town afterwards. On Sunday morning, November 19, the Germans attacked the town with 250 soldiers of the Waffen-SS. After bombing the town and the castle with grenade launchers the German soldiers began to attack the castle itself which was defended and fortified by 4 members of the Luxembourgish militia. (Philippe Gleis, Misch Schneiders, Will Weyrich and Friedrich Heintzen). After heavy fighting around the castle, 6 German soldiers managed to open the gate of the castle and enter it, only to be involved in a house-to-house fighting inside the castle. After conceding several casualties, the Germans withdrew from the castle and concentrated their force on the town, but the strong resistance from the militia made them abandon their plans and withdraw to the other side of the river to Germany.

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