Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


This is coolbert:

Did some reading to refresh my memory on the Dieppe landings [1942].

The Dieppe “raid” has always been referred to as a success even though it was a failure?! A pretty marked failure too. Most of the assault force either being killed or captured, NONE of the objectives being gained. An unnecessary slaughter from WHICH A LOT WAS LEARNED??!!

[success even though it was a failure?! That is the type of double-speak higher commanders and political leaders engage in when they have stepped on it big time?! “We lost, but we learned a lot from the loss”]

Tanks [armor] were an integral part of the Dieppe landing force. Taken into consideration by the planners and included in the operation. About a battalion of tanks DID go ashore to provide fire support for the infantry.

Tanks landing at Dieppe seem to have encountered two major problems, neither having been anticipated and for which they [armor] had no counter.

1. Many tanks threw off their tracks while just attempting to get OFF THE BEACH!!

"Despite the damage and the difficulties 27 of the 29 tanks got ashore but only 15 managed to struggle up the smooth, grapefruit-sized pebbles of the beach, slipping and sliding, to get on to the esplanade."

2. Movement of those tanks that had been able to GET OFF the beach, WAS further impeded by an anti-tank wall that STOPPED ALL additional forward advance.

"the Germans had built tank traps for just such an occasion to keep any invading tanks from getting into the town."

"they had to deal with anti-tank walls more than six feet high and four feet thick protecting the exits from the esplanade."

[not, as I have said, what I thought to be a sea-wall. This was a formidable and unbreachable anti-tank wall!!]

That German division defending Dieppe was rated [by the German themselves] as a second-rate force, with scrounged and antiquated weapons. Did have a first-rate commander [Haase], who seems to have known his stuff!! A second-rate German division was able to obliterate a first-rate Canadian unit, and do so almost at their leisure!! DEFENSE IS THE STRONGER FORM OF COMBAT! Dieppe is yet further additional proof that this is so.

[one German regiment of the 302nd Division opposed the landing. Haase was in general command as that regiment was subordinate to him. He had also devised the plan of defense?

Allied commanders and staffs DID learn a lot from the abortive Dieppe “raid”. And from a surprising source. Haase himself [presumably his staff also]. Hasse authored an after-action report detailing how and why the German was successful in repelling the Canadians at Dieppe. A report captured in 1943 by the Soviets and passed on to the British. A report the British paid exceptional interest to.

"Over a year before [before June 6], the Red Army had mauled Germany's 320th Infantry Division [author calls it mistakenly the 320th, not the 302nd!], capturing its codes and classified documents . . . After bloodily beating off the landing force [at Dieppe] . . . the 320th's officers prepared a critique of all the mistakes the Allies had made, a virtual how-not-to-manual . . . An Army G-2 officer described the critique of Dieppe as 'probably the most important document exploited in preparation for D-Day'."

Analysis of the German after-action report allowed those persons planning the Normandy invasion to adopt measures and develop equipment [Hobart’s Funnies] that facilitated the successful attack on the Sixth of June!




Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home