One of the main problems was that the supply lines from the French coast were much too long. Clearing the (Western) Scheldt and the port of Antwerp was the crucial solution. Subsequently, a heavy battle was waged around the Scheldt estuary and off the Belgian and Dutch coast. The Canadians played an important role in these clashes. It was not until 28 November 1944 that the first Allied ships were able to dock in Antwerp. But the Germans refused to surrender and spread terror with their new V1 en V2 (‘Vergeltungswaffe’) retaliatory weapons.