Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery

The Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery, more commonly known as the Airborne Cemetery, is a Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery in Oosterbeek, near Arnhem, the Netherlands. It was established in 1945 and is home to 1764 graves from the Second World War besides 4 later non-war graves and there are special memorials of two personnel buried elsewhere. Most of the men buried in the cemetery were Allied servicemen killed in the Battle of Arnhem, an Allied attempt to cross the Rhine in 1944, or in the liberation of the city the following year. Men killed in these battles are still discovered in the surrounding area even in the 21st century, and so the number of people interred in the cemetery continues to grow.

WWII War cemetery in Netherlands

Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery
Commonwealth War Graves Commission

The Airborne Cemetery
Used for those deceased 1944–1945
Established 1945


Oosterbeek, Arnhem, Netherlands.
Total burials 1770
Commemorated 1691
Burials by nation
United Kingdom: 1410
Poland: 73
Canada: 32
Netherlands: 6
Australia: 4
New Zealand: 4
Burials by war
Statistics source: Battlefields WWII
Commonwealth War Graves Commission

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Main article: Battle of Arnhem

In September 1944 the Allies launched Operation Market Garden, an attempt by the British 2nd Army to bypass the Siegfried Line and advance into the Ruhr, Germany’s industrial heartland. The operation required the 1st Airborne Corps to seize several bridges over rivers and canals in the Netherlands, allowing ground forces to advance rapidly through the Netherlands and cross the River Rhine.[1]

The British 1st Airborne Division was tasked with securing the most distant objectives; bridges over the Lower Rhine at Arnhem.[2] The division dropped onto the area on 17 September and a small force was able to secure the Arnhem road bridge.[3] However the unexpected presence of SS Panzer troops of the II SS Panzerkorps meant the Allies were never able to fully secure their objectives and so after nine days without sufficient reinforcement by the advancing ground forces, the division was withdrawn on 25 September.[4]

In the 9 days of battle almost 2000 Allied soldiers were killed (some of whom died of their wounds or in captivity after the battle). These included over 1174 men of the British 1st Airborne Division, 219 men of the Glider Pilot Regiment, 92 men of the Polish 1st Independent Parachute Brigade, 368 men of the RAF, 79 re-supply dispatchers of the RASC, 25 men of XXX Corps and 27 men of US IX Troop Carrier Command.[5] The exact number of German dead is unknown, but is believed to be at least 1300.[6] Additionally it is believed 453 Dutch civilians were killed during the battle.[7]

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. . . Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery . . .