Page:United States Statutes at Large Volume 113 Part 3.djvu/183

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PUBLIC LAW 106-142 —DEC. 7, 1999 113 STAT. 1701 Public Law 106-142 106th Congress Joint Resolution Commending the World War II veterans who fought in the Battle of the Bulge, Dec. 7, 1999 and for other purposes. [HJ Res 65] Whereas the battle in the European theater of operations during World Wax II known as the Battle of the Bulge was fought from December 16, 1944, to January 25, 1945; Whereas the Battle of the Bulge was a major German offensive in the Ardennes forest region of Belgium and Luxembourg which took Allied forces by surprise and was intended to split the Allied forces in Europe by breaking through the Allied lines, crippling the Allied fuel supply lines, and exacerbating tensions within the alliance; Whereas 600,000 American troops, joined by 55,000 British soldiers and other Allied forces, participated in the Battle of the Bulge, overcoming numerous disadvantages in the early days of the battle that included fewer numbers, treacherous terrain, and bitter weather conditions; Whereas the Battle of the Bulge resulted in 81,000 American and 1,400 British casualties, of whom approximately 19,000 American and 200 British soldiers were killed, with the remainder wounded, captured, or listed as missing in action; Whereas the worst atrocity involving Americans in the European theater during World War II, known as the Malmedy Massacre, occurred on December 17, 1944, when 86 imarmed American prisoners of war were gunned down by elements of the German 1st SS Panzer Division; Whereas Americein, British, and other Allied forces overcame great odds throughout the battle, including most famously the action of the 101st Airborne Division in holding back German forces at the key Belgian crossroads town of Bastogne, thereby preventing German forces from achieving their main objective of reaching Antwerp as well as the Meuse River line; Whereas the success of American, British, and other Allied forces in defeating the German attack made possible the defeat of Nazi Germany 4 months later in April 1945; Whereas thouscinds of United States veterans of the Battle of the Bulge have traveled to Belgium and Luxembourg in the years since the battle to honor their fallen comrades who died during the battle; Whereas the peoples of Belgium and Luxembourg, s3mibolizing their friendship and gratitude toward the American soldiers who fought