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US 2nd Armored Division

The 2nd Armored Division of the United States Army, nicknamed "Hell on Wheels", played an important role in the breakout of the Battle of Normandy in World War II. The division was deactivated in 1991; confusingly, the 5th Infantry Division[?] was redesignated as "2nd Armored Division" in 1992, then became the 4th Infantry Division[?] in 1995.

The 2nd Armored was formed at Fort Benning[?], Georgia on 15 July 1940, originally commanded by Major General Charles L. Scott[?], with Colonel George S. Patton in charge of training. Scott was promoted to command the I Armored Corps[?] in November of that year, which put Patton, now a brigadier general[?], in command of the division.

Elements of the division participated in Operation Torch, landing at Casablanca on 8 November 1942, but the whole division first went into action in the Operation Husky landing at Gela[?] in Sicily, 10 July 1943 and fighting through to Palermo.

The division then landed in Normandy on 9 June 1944, operating in the Cotentin peninsula[?], and later forming the right flank of the Operation Cobra[?] assault. It blunted the German attack on Avranches[?], then raced across France with the rest of the US Third Army[?], reaching the Albert Canal[?] in Belgium on 8 September. The division had harder fighting in Germany, then in the Battle of the Bulge counterattacked and recaptured Celles on 25 December.

On 1 March 1945, the division attacked across the Cologne Plain[?], crossed the Rhine River on 27 March, fought the Battle for the Teutoberger Wald Passes[?] from 2 April, crossed the Weser River[?] on 5 April, and assaulted Magdeburg 17 April. After the end of hostilities , the division became the first American unit to enter Berlin.

The division returned to Camp Hood[?] (later Fort Hood[?]) in Texas in 1946. It served NATO in Germany from 1951 to 1957, and several of its battalions were in Vietnam. The 1st Tiger Brigade[?] participated in Operation Desert Storm.


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