Outstanding types of barbed-wire obstacles and concrete antitank obstacles now used
by the Germans in continental Europe were discussed in Intelligence Bulletin,
Volume II, No. I, pp. 40-50. It is believed
that the following additional information regarding German defensive preparations
in Europe similarly warrants attention.
1. WIRE AROUND PILLBOXES IN WOODS (see fig. 20)
Pillboxes in woods are likely to be protected by wire obstacles about 50 yards in
depth, with plain and barbed wire irregularly interwoven among the fences. Also,
pillboxes in woods may be screened by wire netting, about 7 1/2 feet
high, with firing apertures at the level of the pillbox embrasures.
2. ANTITANK DITCHES
a. The antitank ditch shown in figure 21 serves as a delaying obstacle or as a
trap, depending on the depth. The Germans have been tending to increase the
width and depth of such ditches. Many ditches in France now exceed
the 13-foot width illustrated in figure 20. The sides of
these ditches are sometimes revetted.
b. The Germans consider "asparagus ditches" — or
"fishbone ditches," as they are also called — useful in
ground which is likely to be rather moist (see fig. 22). It
is a German principle to mine the spoil used in the parapets.
c. The type of ditch illustrated in figure 23 is revetted with
logs. The spoil is used to form a parapet on the German side, while
the depression itself is filled with an apron-type barbed-wire