This diorama was going to be my entry in my local club's December Group Build commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge. Despite my best efforts, I was unable to get it finished in time for the “contest”.
Research - the Preparations
After a great deal of checking my Battle of the Bulge references, I decided to build a diorama representing the epic fight of the 2nd and 99th US infantry Divisions early in the offensive to stem the tide of the German offensive along the so-called northern shoulder. The 2nd Infantry Division had launched an attack north of the Ardennes shortly before the start of the Bulge and had to withdraw through the relatively untried 99th Infantry Division. The road through the twin villages of Krinkelt-Rocherath was crucial for those two divisions to make a fighting withdrawal toward the Elsenborn ridge. The 12th SS Panzer Division attacked the twin villages and, in close range fighting in very foggy conditions, they were driven back by the US infantry. I chose to use the Dragon Panzer IV late J (Kit 6080) and combine that with the following figures: (1) the tank commander from the Verlinden 1711 set; (2) SS Soldier with MP44 from Nemrod (35040); (3) Warriors 35259, a kneeling SS infantryman in reversible winter uniform; (4) Michael Roberts (54-006) 101st Airborne bazookaman in the Ardennes; (5)Warriors 35059 and (6) 35060, two US infantrymen in winter gear, one with a BAR. The idea is that the tank commander will be urging the two SS soldiers, who are peeking around the corner of the Verlinden 107 Ruined Ardennes Farm, to move forward into the village, while the three, somewhat surprised, American soldiers are hurriedly preparing to ambush the tank. The final component of the diorama was a Kancali stone wall set.