Fort eben emael french fort dben mael is an inactive belgian fortress located between lige and maastricht on the belgian dutch border near the albert canalit was designed to defend belgium from a german attack across the narrow belt of dutch territory in the region constructed in 1931 1935 it was reputed to be impregnable and at the time the largest in the world. While gliders had not yet been used in warfare they seemed a good choice for a surprise assault on eben emael the motorless aircraft were silent and could actually land right atop the fortress just after dawn on may 10 1940 nine german gliders did just that. The battle of fort eben emael was a battle between belgian and german forces that took place between 10 may and 11 may 1940 and was part of the battle of belgium and fall gelb the german invasion of the low countries and france. Along with 8 of the 12 modernised fortresses built at the end of the 19th century and 3 new fortresses fort eben emael formed part of the fortified position of lige in 1940 top the barracks level 0 45 m below the hill plateau. Stronger than the maginot line in france or than the west wall in germany that was the reputation of fort eben emael in 1939 this colossus was built by the belgian army between 1932 and 1935 to reinforce a weak point in its defense system against germany the meuse valley in the region of maastricht
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