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distributed to the 101st until 28 December.) On the other hand the tankers had much to learn from commanders and troops who were used to fighting "surrounded."


McAuliffe's logistic means were less substantial than the tactical. The airborne division normally carried less supply than conventional divisions and the 101st had been hurried into Belgium with ammunition and grenade pouches not quite full, much individual equipment missing (overshoes, helmets, sleeping bags, and the like), and only a few truckloads of 105-mm. howitzer shells. In fact some of the first paratroopers into line had to be supplied with ammunition from the CCB trains. Fortunately Roberts' trains were full, and in some major supply items even had overages, when they arrived at Bastogne.


The ability of the 101st to sustain itself had been severely diminished on the night of 19 December when German raiding parties (some reported in civilian garb) surprised and overran the division service area around Mande-St. Etienne. Most of the quartermaster and ordnance troops made their way to the VIII Corps, but the raiders captured or killed most of the division medical company. Only eight officers and forty-four men escaped. This loss of doctors, aid men, and medical supplies was one of the most severe blows dealt the 101st. A number of transport vehicles also were lost in this affray, but about a hundred trucks had been sent to the rear for resupply and so escaped. Very few of these got back to the 101st before the ring closed.


In addition, Roberts had sent the CCB trucks back for resupply just before the roads were closed. There was, of course, a considerable quantity of ammunition, food, and other supplies inside Bastogne which the VIII Corps had been unable to evacuate. (Officers of Middleton's staff bitterly regretted the loss of the wine and liquors which had been carefully husbanded for consumption at Christmas and New Year). Bastogne was sizable enough to have some reserve civilian stocks, and the melange of armor, engineers, and artillery units around the city had-supplies and ammunition in their own vehicles. (Pancakes would appear regularly in the rations served during the siege, these concocted from the doughnut flour left in a huge American Red Cross dump.)


Through assiduous scrounging, requisitioning, and an enforced pooling of unit resources, the G-4 of the 101st would be able to work minor logistic miracles-but these alone would not have insured the survival of the Bastogne garrison. The airborne division had been supplied by air during the Holland operation, and when, on the 21st, McAuliffe knew that his command was isolated he asked for aerial resupply. Unfortunately no plans had been worked out in advance for airlift support and the supply records of the Holland campaign-which would have made logistic calculation and procedure easier-were back in France. In the first instance, therefore, the troops in Bastogne would have to take what they got whenever they could get it.


Communications would present no major problem. A corps radio-link vehicle arrived in Bastogne just before the road to Neufchateau was severed; so Middleton and McAuliffe had two-way phone and teletype at their disposal throughout the siege. Inside Bastogne