Dieppe deaths

Discussions on WW2 in Western Europe & the Atlantic.
Von Schadewald
Member
Posts: 2065
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:17
Location: Israel

Dieppe deaths

Post by Von Schadewald » 01 Dec 2005 16:49

At the http://ddaytoberlin.com site can be seen Deutsche Wochenschau footage of 5-9-42 of the Dieppe raid. Scores of dead Canadians can be seen lined up where they died in long rows right up against the sea wall. What killed them? It doesn't look like machine gun fire or mortars.

Von Schadewald
Member
Posts: 2065
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:17
Location: Israel

Post by Von Schadewald » 04 Dec 2005 00:25

Apparently not only were machine guns iring from everywhere and couldn't be located to return fire, more devastatingly, there were 75mm howitzers in caves that fired with impunity on the flanks, too difficult to spot and locate.

So the Dieppe massacre had the "positive" effects of:

1. Making the Germans pull to the west a division from Stalingrad, probably causing the ultimate loss of 6th Army.

2. Showed the impossibility of invading via Calais.

3. Showed the importance of special landing tanks.

4. Showed that Mountbatten had exceeded has "Peter Principle", ensuring that he would not be in command of D-Day, sparing an even bigger disaster.

With hindsight, given the troops and equipment available, is there any alternative tactics or target that the Anglo-Canadians could have used to have made a 1942 Dieppe-style raid an actual success?

ohrdruf
Member
Posts: 862
Joined: 15 May 2004 22:02
Location: south america

Post by ohrdruf » 02 Feb 2006 21:48

Sir William Stephenson, Head of the British Intelligence Coordination in New York, explained in his book in 1977 "A Man Called Intrepid" - (I will supply the full quote if required) - that the Dieppe raid had been "a cleverly conceived plan" to convince the Germans that a successful assault on a heavily defended beach was not possible." In the memoirs of his Luftwaffe ADC Nikolaus von Below, it is recorded that Hitler was so disconcerted that he sat up all night racking his brains to understand a reason for the attack, but was unable to find one.

User avatar
Xavier
Member
Posts: 3259
Joined: 12 Nov 2002 02:01
Location: South of the Texas Border.. :)

Post by Xavier » 02 Feb 2006 22:18

IIRC, also, the diepe raid was also a cover for an effort to capture some parts, at least of a german radar based in teh vincinity of the town.........
Xavier
Instandsetzungtruppfuhrer

Panzer Regiment 6
Member
Posts: 22
Joined: 31 Jul 2005 11:41
Location: SW London/Surrey

Post by Panzer Regiment 6 » 03 Feb 2006 10:16

Xavier wrote:IIRC, also, the diepe raid was also a cover for an effort to capture some parts, at least of a german radar based in teh vincinity of the town.........
Xavier
Instandsetzungtruppfuhrer
I think you will find that the British Parachute Regiment had already done this job already earlier on in the war,also,the raid was also part of the deal Churchil had with Stalin to open up a second front to take some pressure off the Russian front.

Koen[B]
Member
Posts: 50
Joined: 19 Jan 2006 16:19
Location: Belgium

Post by Koen[B] » 03 Feb 2006 11:18

Don't forget the successful mission of Jack Nissen during the attack.

Koen

ohrdruf
Member
Posts: 862
Joined: 15 May 2004 22:02
Location: south america

Post by ohrdruf » 03 Feb 2006 14:47

Extract from:

A MAN CALLED INTREPID
Sir William Stevenson
Sphere Books Ltd, London, 1977 at page 414

"JUBILEE," said Mountbatten in 1974, "convinced the Germans that the full-scale invasion could not be conducted over open beaches. We came firmly to the conclusion that we could invade the open beaches with prefabricated mobile ports," said Mountbatten. "MULBERRIES were developed - the ports we floated across the Channel to produce sheltered water off those open beaches that the enemy had been deceived into lightly defending. So JUBILEE became the Great Deception."

As good a reason as any other.

Von Schadewald
Member
Posts: 2065
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:17
Location: Israel

Post by Von Schadewald » 03 Feb 2006 21:27

Would the Allies sacrifice 6000 men in a "cleverly conceived plan" to so trick the Germans?! Montgomery wanted the plan shelved. Mountbatten ostensibly saw it through without CCS authorisation.

But if it really was a conspiracy, that would explain why the poor Canucks were given faulty Stens the day before the raid, the grenade priming incident, the slaughter of the reserves etc!

The Germans said that Dieppe "mocked all rules of military strategy and logic."

"Me and Edwina spent the entire war jumping in and out of other people's beds!" (Lord Louis).

alf
Member
Posts: 1343
Joined: 09 Oct 2003 10:45
Location: Australia

Post by alf » 04 Feb 2006 00:04

For an excellent book on Dieppe from the Canadian perspective find

Dieppe Tradegy to Truimph by Brigadier Denis Whitaker. Published 1992 ISBN 0-07-551386-4

Whittaker as Captain was the only unwounded officer of his Brigade to get back and was present at Mountbattens debriefing the following day. Much of the Intrepid stuff is speculation, Whittaker took many years to try and find out the reasons for Dieppe and gives his opinions.


This site has some photos that people may find helpful http://home.istar.ca/~lyster/diepperaid/main.html

Most of the justifications post war of conspiracies are simply attempts to justify a massacre. That's what it was a poor planned operation with insufficent fire support. Whittaker talks of the excitement of being told 5 destroyers were providing gun support and a squadron of hurricanes suppressing fire as they landed. In their naviety they thought it impressive.

Remember Canada (and especially its Army) had been at war since 10/9/39 and seen no large scale actions. Unlike their colonial cousins the Australians and New Zealanders who had been locked in heavy fighting in the desert for 2 years and in the Islands on the Pacific. Whittaker traces how they wanted to be part of the attack, all dressed up to kill and no where to go after almost 3 years made them look at the plan and not see the glaring faults in it.

He also talks of the fighting and what happened on the beaches in great detail but most importantly the aftermath. Its worth finding a copy if possible.

User avatar
Benoit Douville
Member
Posts: 3184
Joined: 11 Mar 2002 01:13
Location: Montréal

Post by Benoit Douville » 09 Feb 2006 05:19

Koen,

Are you talking about the guy who captured a radar during the Operation? I remember reading a book in french about that a real long time ago, the title was "Green Beach" if I am not mistaken.

Regards

Koen[B]
Member
Posts: 50
Joined: 19 Jan 2006 16:19
Location: Belgium

Post by Koen[B] » 09 Feb 2006 11:23

Koen,
Are you talking about the guy who captured a radar during the Operation? I remember reading a book in french about that a real long time ago, the title was "Green Beach" if I am not mistaken.
Yes indeed, he didn't capture a radar but was able to cut their communication wires so that they had to call their HQ etc by old fashion radio, this was of course intercepted by the English across the channel. This gave the English a good view on how the German radarconnection worked, between the 2 types of radar they used.

They said that every men KIA during Dieppe saved several more during D-Day because of that radarinfo and the experiences they got during the Dieppe landing.

Koen

Andreas
Member
Posts: 6938
Joined: 10 Nov 2002 14:12
Location: Europe

Post by Andreas » 09 Feb 2006 12:05

alf wrote:He also talks of the fighting and what happened on the beaches in great detail but most importantly the aftermath. Its worth finding a copy if possible.
Thanks for the info alf - the book is easy to get: Amazon

All the best

Andreas

User avatar
Juha Hujanen
Member
Posts: 2196
Joined: 20 Mar 2002 11:32
Location: Suur-Savo,Finland

Post by Juha Hujanen » 09 Feb 2006 17:02

Another good book,thou little older is Jacques Mordal:Dieppe-The Dawn of Decision.

It can also be found for few dollars here:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/offer- ... oding=UTF8

Cheers/Juha

User avatar
Pips
Member
Posts: 1278
Joined: 26 Jun 2005 08:44
Location: Country NSW, Australia

Post by Pips » 10 Feb 2006 08:18

The comments from the book A man Called Intrepid are very much after the fact and, to a degree, are self serving. Mountbatten took a lot of criticism from all three Service Chief's for the Dieppe debacle, and it was only his close ties to Churchill that saved him from being removed from Special Operations. Hence in the book he made the point of Dieppe being a dry run for the Invasion at a later date, and that lots of good things were learnt.

In a way his argument is just. Planning started in April 1942, the raids stated objective being " to test the enemy defences on a strongly defended sector of coast, and to discover what resistance would have to be met in an endeavour to seize a port. Secondly to monitor how quickly the German command can react to a probe in force."

To ensure success (so the British thought) Dieppe was selected because it had suitable beaches for landing troops in large numbers, and it was within range of fighter cover from British airfields.

Unfortunately for the British forces the Germans reacted far more quickly and effectively than was thought possible, and with great force.

Finally bear in mind that it wasn't only the Canadians who suffered. They did lose the bulk of men - 215 officers and 3,164 men. The Commandos lost 24 officers and 223 men. The Royal Navy lost 81 officers and 469 men, plus 34 ships including the destroyer HMS Berkeley out of a force of 252 ships. And the RAf committed just over 60 Squadrons, and lost over 100 aircraft.

Von Schadewald
Member
Posts: 2065
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:17
Location: Israel

Re: Dieppe deaths

Post by Von Schadewald » 16 Feb 2017 05:02

Image

Return to “WW2 in Western Europe & the Atlantic”