The Battle of Château-Thierry was fought on July 18, 1918 and was one of the first actions of the American Expeditionary Forces under General John J. "Black Jack" Pershing. It was a battle in World War I as part of the Second Battle of the Marne, initially prompted by a German offensive launched on 15 July against the AEF, an expeditionary force consisting of troops from both the Army and Marine Corps, and the newest troops on the front.
On the morning of 18 July 1918, the French and American forces between Fontenoy and Château-Thierry launched a counter-assault under the overall direction of Allied généralissime Ferdinand Foch against the German positions. This assault on a 40 km wide front was the first in over a year. The American army played a role fighting for the regions around Soissons and Château-Thierry, in collaboration with predominantly French forces. The allied forces had managed to keep their plans a secret, and their attack at 04:45 took the Germans by surprise when the troops went "Over the Top" without a preparatory artillery bombardment, but instead followed closely behind a rolling barrage which began with great synchronized precision. Eventually, the two opposing assaults inter-penetrated and individual American units exercised initiative and continued fighting despite being nominally behind enemy lines.
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