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Dieppe merged thread (70th Anniversary, historical debates, etc.)

PanaEng

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Thucydides said:
In the end, a lot of this theorizing has more to do with the human tendency to look for patterns in large amounts of material, and for survivors to try to answer the question of "why"?

No one likes to believe that they have carried out a difficult task or made a great sacrifice for nothing, and Dieppe certainly would seem to have been a very pointless expenditure of blood and treasure. I will not attempt to argue for reasons why or why not (since I am totally unqualified to do so anyway), but stories like "Dieppe Uncovered", "Green Beach" and so on are attempts to rationalize the disaster by assigning it a greater purpose.

I don't believe (like many people here) that these operations were the prime factors behind the Dieppe raid, although I can accept that once the plan was in motion, clever and ambitious people such as the ones depicted in the documentary quickly siezed on it as a means to carry out plans of their own. With a divisional sized force in play, it would be quite easy to slip in one or even several commando units to carry out secondary actions under the cover of the raid, and so there is no reason not to believe that the attempted raids on Naval HQ and the radar station were not planned and partially executed under cover of the larger mission.

Professor O'Keefe has done a marvelous job of uncovering new material and filling in many blank spots about the raid, and we should all give thanks and wish him well regardless if we agree or disagree with his conclusions.
 

gordjenkins

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One  final question raised by recent CBC documentary on Dieppe Raid

who is this Prof David O'Keefe? - he seems to be an expert in revealing "secrets" and "reasons for"previous Canadian Military disasters "The Secret War Files: The Battle of The Mace -The Battle of the Mace was the last battle of the Normandy Campaign taking place over three days from August 19th to 21st, 1944." http://www.history.ca/ontv/titledetails.aspx?titleid=251045

b]


Tend to agree -if there was a German Navy latest 4 wheel Enigma machine at all in Dieppe- that this was an "add on" to "siezing Freya airborne radar set " etc. (Why would Germans have latest Navy Enigma machine anyway in a remote fishing village right opposite UKcoasts of Dover. Plus why not send in small Commando
Unit to seize -either of above - if either of above were there in first place??)

ps
note 4th wheel -not 3 -on attached German Navy Enigma machine
 

Edward Campbell

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gordjenkins said:
One  final question raised by recent CBC documentary on Dieppe Raid

who is this Prof David O'Keefe? - he seems to be an expert in revealing "secrets" and "reasons for"previous Canadian Military disasters "The Secret War Files: The Battle of The Mace -The Battle of the Mace was the last battle of the Normandy Campaign taking place over three days from August 19th to 21st, 1944." http://www.history.ca/ontv/titledetails.aspx?titleid=251045

b]


Tend to agree -if there was a German Navy latest 4 wheel Enigma machine at all in Dieppe- that this was an "add on" to "siezing Freya airborne radar set " etc. (Why would Germans have latest Navy Enigma machine anyway in a remote fishing village right opposite UKcoasts of Dover. Plus why not send in small Commando
Unit to seize -either of above - if either of above were there in first place??)

ps
note 4th wheel -not 3 -on attached German Navy Enigma machine


This is from a self congratulatory publicity 'blurb' from Random House, announcing that it is publishing "the remarkable ultra-secret story behind the greatest raid of the Second World War," so take it with a small grain of salt.

About David O'Keefe: David R. O'Keefe is an award-winning historian, documentarian and professor at prestigious Marianopolis College in Westmount, Quebec. O'Keefe served with the Royal Highland Regiment (The Black Watch of Canada) in Montreal, and worked as a Signals Intelligence specialist for the Directorate of History and Heritage (DND) that produced the Official History of the Royal Canadian Navy in the Second World War. His publications include influential articles in Canadian Defence Quarterly, the Journal of Canadian Military History, and the Canadian Army Journal, to name but a few. He has served as a historian for History Television in Canada, appeared on CBC Radio, Global Television, UKTV Network in Great Britain, and has numerous television documentaries and publications to his credit.

Marioanopolis College, where Prof O'Keefe teaches, self-describes itself as:

For more than a century, Marianopolis College has provided a student-friendly environment where motivated young people achieve their goals, grow as global citizens and succeed at university and beyond.

Established in 1908 by the Congrégation de Notre-Dame, Marianopolis began as a university-degree-granting institution for women. In 1969, following educational changes in Quebec, Marianopolis phased out its university-degree programs and admitted its first students to a CEGEP-equivalent program. Also that year, Marianopolis began accepting male students.

Marianopolis College’s track record is one of change, development and growth from its earliest days to the present. Initially called Notre Dame Ladies College, a bilingual school and the first institution of higher learning for English Catholic women in Quebec, it was renamed Marguerite Bourgeoys College in 1926. During World War II, its English sector’s curriculum was named Marianopolis and reorganized along the lines of English-language universities to include programs in general science and honours chemistry.

Today, Marianopolis is recognized as one of the top pre-university colleges in Quebec, with a culturally diverse student body of about 2,000 students culled from the top graduates from high schools, public and private, English and French, from across the province and abroad.

Thanks to the College’s strong academics, small size and diverse activities beyond the classroom, students discover new interests, network with industry leaders and participate in endeavours that provide them with an advantage when they apply to the world’s leading universities. Almost all Marianopolis graduates attend university, a majority in their top choice of program.
 

exspy

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In 1969...Marianopolis phased out its university-degree programs and admitted its first students to a CEGEP-equivalent program.

So he's a high school teacher (or would be in any other province).  How does that qualify him to use the title Professor?  No mention of him having obtained a PhD.

Still, he's written and published more than I have, so I really shouldn't carp about his academic qualifications.

Cheers,
Dan, Professor Extremus en Minutiae
 

gordjenkins

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Tend to agree with Dan -
-Mountbatten -and remember Montgommery was involved in planning also- but got out at last minute.
As for High School CGEP teacher theory that raid was for Navy Enigma machine - check out his CGEP at
http://www.marianopolis.edu/
this theory is ludicrous!
And it is being legitimized by special presentation at War Museum Ottawa during Remembrance Day week
as "THE reason  -"Dieppe Uncovered" -sponsored by Veterans affairs Canadaon 6 Nov if you care to attend.
 

GAP

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Not sure if this has been posted already, but an interesting theory....

Were Allied Soldiers Betrayed At Dieppe? New book raises questions on an infamous World War Two battle
http://boxscorenews.com/were-allied-soldiers-betrayed-at-dieppe-new-book-raises-questions-on-an-in-p55752-68.htm

Stryker-Indigo Media - NEW YORK (April 16, 2013) - New and troubling accusations surrounding the controversial 1942 Battle of Dieppe are being raised, pointing a damning finger at American and British news organizations, including "Time" and "Life" magazines, accusing them of leaking pre-raid information to the Germans resulting in the deaths, woundings, and capture of over 4,300 American, British and Canadian soldiers.

In their first major book release in almost nine years, best-selling Canadian authors George and Darril Fosty, in their new book "Where Brave Men Fall: The Battle of Dieppe and the Allied Espionage War Against Hitler, 1939-1942", explore the controversial 1942 Battle of Dieppe looking at pre-raid advertisements, in what the authors claim, were part of a complex campaign initiated at the highest levels of American and British political and military circles designed to tip off the Germans prior to the August 1942 raid and thus ensuring the raid's failure. The revelations, stunning in detail and scope, are the latest accusations to surface concerning the battle.
much more on link
 

Colin Parkinson

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Link to the modern Dieppe
https://maps.google.ca/maps?q=Dieppe,+France&hl=en&ll=49.927411,1.067648&spn=0.044866,0.111494&sll=49.257735,-123.123904&sspn=0.131082,0.21801&oq=dieppe&t=h&hnear=Dieppe,+Seine-Maritime,+Upper+Normandy,+France&z=14

Coded messages in radio programs was common, however this means that the Germans had a very robust intelligence service network that was not unraveled, possibly based on bitter IRA types?. I don't really buy the deliberate leaking. A successful raid would have far more effect on forcing the Germans to double their defense efforts, than a failed one. There are many other ways for the Germans to figure what was the likely attack location.
 

Old Sweat

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Now the Dieppe raid was originally titled Operation RUTTER and was planned for early July. On 7 July it was cancelled and three days later resurrected as Operation JUBILEE to be executed on 19 August. Given the technology of the time, was it possible to design ads and contract with publications to insert them in less than six weeks? Had similar adds appeared in late June or early July?
 

cupper

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There were similar coincidences with D-Day as well. The one that stands out is the crossword puzzle that had answers which were codenames for the operation and various targets.
 

mariomike

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Colin P said:
Coded messages in radio programs was common, <snip>

An example was, "Nous allons rendre visite a Maginot ce soir."

Andre Maginot, the French Minister of War who gave his name to the famous "Line", had been born in Revigny.

Bomber Command had "visited" Revigny on the nights of 12/13 and 14/15 July, 1944. Both raids had been failures with 17 Lancasters shot down.

Broadcast by the BBC during the afternoon of 18 July, it was a warning, given as one of the conditions for the continued bombing of French railway centres.

That night, 24 more of the Lancasters sent to Revigny were shot down. 22 per cent of the force.

The question is, if French officials knew that an attack was heading for Revigny that night, did the Luftwaffe also know?


 

lmac99

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Hi folks,
Recently, I've been reading a lot about the Dieppe Raid, and while most articles and books I've come across state that it was a total failure, many say that it was valuable and lessons learned during this raid were applied during D-Day...

I was wondering if there is any evidence of the Allies directly changing strategies due to the outcome of Dieppe, or if saying that 'we learned a lot' is just easier to digest. For the info I have found regarding the lessons learned, most of it seems like common sense that shouldn't need to be learned, such as the need for surprise and air support. Are there any good books that you could recommend that focus on strategies learned during Dieppe and later applied on D-Day?
Thanks!
 

larry Strong

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New research suggests the real intent of the historic raid on Dieppe in 1942 was to steal a "Ultra" machine that would help crack top-secret German codes with the release of once-classified and ultra-secret war files.

http://globalnews.ca/news/274605/breaking-german-codes-real-reason-for-1942-dieppe-raid-historian/

http://www.canadashistory.ca/Community/Community-Features/Articles/A-New-Look-at-WW2-Dieppe-Raid


Cheers
Larry
 

Chispa

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First thank U too the Mods for unlocking the thread, we must remember way too many camps, and vigorously debated since the needless aftermath.:brit poppy:


lmac99 said:
Hi folks,
Recently, I've been reading a lot about the Dieppe Raid, and while most articles and books I've come across state that it was a total failure, many say that it was valuable and lessons learned during this raid were applied during D-Day...

I was wondering if there is any evidence of the Allies directly changing strategies due to the outcome of Dieppe, or if saying that 'we learned a lot' is just easier to digest. For the info I have found regarding the lessons learned, most of it seems like common sense that shouldn't need to be learned, such as the need for surprise and air support. Are there any good books that you could recommend that focus on strategies learned during Dieppe and later applied on D-Day?
Thanks!


If you read that much on Dieppe your head must be spinning, considering the vast amount of historians/authors, questionable narratives, suggestions. As posted by Mr. Larry Strong; have you read One Day in August by Cdn and very Black Watch military historian David R. O'keefe? It's on special at Indigo hard cover for $10.00, regular price $31. great stocking stuffer: https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-ca/books/product/9780345807694-item.html?mkwid=sglCNn6VL_dc&pcrid=44154474422&pkw=&pmt=&s_campaign=goo-Shopping_Books&gclid=CNSCo7HiwdACFZZMDQodHyoONA


Although some have been critical of the findings, It's considered by many the benchmark in the Deippe saga; David O'Keefe rewrites history, the Prof., humbly replied; "there are still many questions need answering, I believe this is just the tip of the iceberg."

The Dieppe Raid and the Question of German Foreknowledge Captain S.W. Roskill, Journal of the Royal United Service Institution 109  (Feb 1, 1964): 27.

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03071846409419700


Ross Munro’s anecdote while in the landing craft with eight others: “Even before we put to sea some had ominous feeling about what was ahead of them at the other side.”

Mountbatten: “I felt that even if the Germans knew that an operation had been planned against Dieppe and then abandoned, that the very last thing they'd ever imagine is we would be so stupid as to lay on the same operation again.”

David O’Keefe: Ian Fleming's Commandos, X Platoon from the Royal Marine Commando (later No. 40 (Royal Marine) Commando and No 30 Assault Unit) who made their debut at the core of the Dieppe Raid on August 19th 1942. Notice how young and youthful they were before the raid in the first two photos leading up to Dieppe and their "official" debut as 30AU in Torch two months later. The final photos show the strain of three years of war which tends to make one grow up fast. Perhaps too fast. Photos courtesy of Paul McGrath pictured prominently in all and Commando Veterans Archive.

Fallow link for all photos: https://www.facebook.com/1382094788690080/photos/pcb.1829681473931407/1829652913934263/?type=3&theater


Thursday, August 16, 2012: British Intelligence Told Germans in Advance of Dieppe Raid: By Donald Sensing.

On 19 August 1942, a force of 4,963 Canadian troops, accompanied by just over a thousand British soldiers, 50 US Rangers and 15 Frenchmen, conducted the catastrophe of Operation Jubilee. According to O’Keefe’s research, British naval officers used Operation Jubilee to target the German-made Enigma code machine, an electro-mechanical piece of equipment that used a series of rotors for the encryption and decryption of secret messages. ...

While the British were successful breaking into the three-rotor Enigma machines, everything changed on February 1, 1942, when the Germans introduced the four-rotor Enigma device — instantly blacking out Bletchley Park.

According to files, British naval intelligence believed that in order to crack the four-rotor Enigma machine, a pinch raid was necessary. A successful pinch would mean secretly stealing parts of the machine, code books and setting sheets.

This may well be, with the other objectives listed above being also true, but of lesser strategic importance. It doesn't change the fact that the SIS blew the secrecy of the whole show…….

Three months later a similarly accurate-but-late message was sent warning of a commando raid against the French port of St. Nazaire, where the destroyer Campbelltown, loaded with explosives, was remotely crashed into the only drydock along that coast large enough to handle German U-boats.

The SIS was given permission to send just such a too-late-but-true message to the Germans about the Dieppe raid. The message was to be sent Monday evening the 18th of August, about 12 hours after the Allied forces had landed.

The SIS was not told that the landing was postponed until Tuesday. The Germans received the message Monday evening, alerted their forces at Dieppe and were waiting before dawn on the 19th.

Lovell writes that a director of Britain's Special Operation, Executive told him that the SIS operation escaped being closed down by the thinnest of margins, surviving only when a Briton pointed out that the doubled agent's standing with the Abwehr could not possibly be higher, and that the Germans would now believe anything he told them.

Claiming to have very highly-placed sources deep within General Dwight D. Eisenhower's headquarters, the agent became deeply involved in deception operations covering Operation Overlord, the invasion of France in 1944. Most important was to deceive the Germans of the place and time of the invasion. I'll let Lovell finish the story (click for larger image): http://senseofevents.blogspot.ca/2012/08/british-intelligence-told-germans-in.html



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Old Sweat

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To me, wearing my cynic's badge, is that the main lesson of Dieppe was the Combined Operations Command had outlived its usefulness. There certainly was a place for it in the dear days of 1940 and 1941, but by mid-1942 the initiative was shifting to the Allies.

Dieppe was planned as a divisional raid, with two brigades (including their headquarters) landing, completing fairly challenging tactical tasks and withdrawing in one day. It was conceived as a raid, but evolved into a mini-imnvasion. Just as a fighting patrol is not a battalion attack, a multi-battalion assault landing on several beaches was not a raid. The Combined Operations planners were enthusiastic amateurs who seemed to have been wildly optimistic. For example, it should have been obvious it would have been difficult to achieve surprise with staggered H-Hours. As a gunner, I can't avoid adding that the fire plan was a farce.

After Dieppe the planning for the return to Europe fell under the purview of an organization titled Chief of Staff, Supreme Allied Commander (COSSAC) and this organization developed the initial concept of operations and outline plan for D Day.
 

Chispa

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Old Sweat said:
To me, wearing my cynic's badge, is that the main lesson of Dieppe was the Combined Operations Command had outlived its usefulness. There certainly was a place for it in the dear days of 1940 and 1941, but by mid-1942 the initiative was shifting to the Allies.

Dieppe was planned as a divisional raid, with two brigades (including their headquarters) landing, completing fairly challenging tactical tasks and withdrawing in one day. It was conceived as a raid, but evolved into a mini-imnvasion. Just as a fighting patrol is not a battalion attack, a multi-battalion assault landing on several beaches was not a raid. The Combined Operations planners were enthusiastic amateurs who seemed to have been wildly optimistic. For example, it should have been obvious it would have been difficult to achieve surprise with staggered H-Hours. As a gunner, I can't avoid adding that the fire plan was a farce.

After Dieppe the planning for the return to Europe fell under the purview of an organization titled Chief of Staff, Supreme Allied Commander (COSSAC) and this organization developed the initial concept of operations and outline plan for D Day.


Many support that narrative, COC in the top 5 of lessons learned, the "planners" were biting on more then they could chew. 


CBC Digital Archives 1942: Carnage on the beaches of Dieppe LISTEN 00:00 14:35

"We have suffered heavy losses, and I saw our men die," says CBC Radio's Robert Bowman, just returned from the bloody beaches of Dieppe. The grim reality of what happened in France yeserday is just setting in: hundreds of Canadians killed, untold numbers taken prisoner. Reading from grimy notes taken during his eight hours ashore, Bowman does not use words like "failure" or "disaster." Instead, he lauds the bravery of the troops, and the lessons learned from the assault.

http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/1942-carnage-on-the-beaches-of-dieppe

Just elaborating on COC: Arising from the armistice concluded by France with Germany in June 1940 and the evacuation of British forces from the Continent, a small organisation was established to take command of subsequent raiding operations against enemy territory and to provide advice on combined assaults. From this emerged a distinct Combined Operations Headquarters, staffed by all three services, but independent of all of them and under the command of a Director of Combined Operations. Admiral of the Fleet, Sir Roger Keyes, was appointed first director in July 1940; he was succeeded in October 1941 by Commodore Lord Louis Mountbatten with the title Adviser on Combined Operations. In March 1942 this title was altered to Chief of Combined Operations; it was also decided that the Chief of Combined Operations should attend meetings of the Chiefs of Staff as a full member whenever major issues were in question and, as previously, when his own combined operations or any special matters in which he was concerned were under consideration.

From the establishment of a Combined Training Centre in August 1940 at Inveraray, Argyllshire, the Combined Operations Command expanded rapidly both within the United Kingdom and overseas, notably in the Middle East and India. In 1942 it sent a permanent representative to the Joint Staffs Mission in Washington and in the same year a Combined Operations Experimental Establishment was set up at Appledore, Devon. This establishment was much involved in the investigation of problems likely to be encountered on the beaches in connection with an invasion of Europe, particularly as regards the landing of armoured vehicles, stores, supplies, etc. Following the successful invasion of Normandy in 1944, a similar establishment was set up in India to carry out the developments and trials necessary in the very different conditions in the Far East.

From its formation, Combined Operations Headquarters maintained a close, though sometimes strained, contact on the naval side with the Admiralty, which set up a number of combined operations branches within its own departments, particularly in relation to operations, materials and personnel. Raiding forces, such as commandos, came under the command of Combined Operations Headquarters, except when they were employed as part of larger operations. Throughout the war Combined Operations Headquarters played a key role in the development of offensive operations against the enemy. This was notably the case in the raid on Dieppe in August 1942 and the preparation and planning of the North Africa and Sicily campaigns in 1942 to 1943, the invasion of Europe in 1944 and similarly, through its directorate in India, in operations in the Far East.

Following the war it was the Admiralty view that Combined Operations Headquarters should cease to be an independent organisation and should be replaced by a joint Combined Operational Planning Staff within the Chiefs of Staff organisation. In 1947, however, it was decided that Combined Operations Headquarters should continue to be responsible for policy, training and technique in amphibious warfare under the direction of the Chiefs of Staff; at the same time the title of chief of combined operations was changed to Chief of Combined Operations Staff and responsibility for Combined Operations estimates was transferred from the Service ministries to the newly-established Ministry of Defence. On 1 April 1948 Combined Operations Headquarters was placed under the administration of that ministry and in 1951 it was re-named Amphibious Warfare Headquarters.

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C5760


According too sources: British Combined Operations formed spring of 1940 "to coordinate commando raids along the German-occupied coast of Europe utilizing the integrated support of the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force. In its seven years of existence, it had four commanders. The first lasted only about a month. Its second, Admiral of the Fleet Sir Roger Keyes, lasted about a year before resigning in October 1941 due to an administrative reorganization that he saw diminish his independence."


COMBINED OPERATIONS THE OFFICIAL STORY OF THE COMMANDOS
by LOUIS MOUNTBATTEN: Published 1943.


Free download of book on PDF: https://archive.org/details/combinedoperatio006231mbp


“Too large to be a symbol, too small to be a success.” — Lord Haw Haw, German propagandist commenting on the Dieppe raid.

Illusive Winston Churchill’s explanation; the supposed raid was in fact a “reconnaissance in force.”

Montgomery: “To assault and capture a port quickly, both troops and tanks would have to go in over the main beaches confronting the town, relying on heavy bombardment and surprise to neutralise the defences.”

The British records show the raid party for Dieppe given 16 objects, one mainly being, Pinch secret documents from German Div., H.Q., at Arques-La Bataille.

Adding more:

After humiliated in June, retreating, rescued on mass from Dunkirk, France, it dawned on the British High Brass returning would require new techniques, equipment, etc., for amphibious landings. Their goal, efficiently combining air, land and sea force operations, hence styled combined operations. They first created a task force overseeing labelled as Directorate for Combined Operations (DCO), authorised on July 1940.

Prior of Op Rutter scuttled on 6th July, British Chiefs of Staff approved Mountbatten’s recommendation; if the raid was cancelled it would be rejuvenated. In B. Loring Villa’s 1989 Unauthorized Action: Once Op. Rutter cancelled, Winston Churchill, British Chiefs of staff never authorised, re-launching or renamed the operation. Without their knowledge, Admiral Mountbatten took “unauthorised action,” revising the raid incognito.


It was conceived as a raid, but evolved into a mini-imnvasion. Just as a fighting patrol is not a battalion attack, a multi-battalion assault landing on several beaches was not a raid.

I've heard it styled as a small-invasion, that argument is questionable considering the definition, size of force involved in a "raid" is not relevant, the action taken is. Post aftermath Churchill used it to his advantage, all smoke and mirrors, owing prior to the incident Russia and American were busting his bollocks concerning opening a second front. Churchill stated after Dieppe: With so much fight amongst use, now we can concentrate on fighting Germans.

IMO, mini or small does not apply to the word invasion, however if that small force conquers' ground per say 300 conquistadors, that is certainly a small mini-invasion force.


Invasion Vs Raid.

Invasion: A military action consisting of armed forces of one geopolitical entity entering territory controlled by another such entity, generally with the objective of conquering territory or altering the established government. (figuratively) The entry of a large group into a new area.

Raid: Mission which has a specific purpose and is not normally intended to capture and hold terrain, but instead finish with the raiding force quickly retreating to a previous defended position prior to enemy forces being able to respond in a co-ordinated manner or formulate a counter-attack. A raiding group may consist of combatants specially trained in this tactic, such as commandos, or as a special mission assigned to any general troops. Raids are often a standard tactic in irregular warfare, employed by warriors, guerrilla fighters, or other irregular military forces.

During the Second World War, the British set up the Combined Operations Headquarters organised harassing raids against the Germans in Europe. The first operation conducted by a "commando" formation, known as Operation Ambassador, took place in July 1940, but it was a small-scale operation that resulted in negligible success. The next major raid was Operation Claymore, which was launched in March 1941 against the Lofoten Islands.[19] Throughout the war there were many other operations of varied size, ranging from small scale operations like those undertaken by Z Special Unit against the Japanese in the Pacific, such as Project Opossum,[20] to Operation Chariot – a raid on Saint-Nazaire – and the Dieppe Raid, which was a large scale raid employing about 6,000 soldiers, over 200 ships and 74 squadrons of aircraft intended to take and hold Dieppe sufficiently to cause sufficient destruction to the port.[21] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raid_(military)


COC was only authorised for small with provisions for large scale raids. Prime war role of the COC, a center for experimentation, innovations, planning in development of equipment and techniques essential too carrying out successful amphibious operations.



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Larry Strong said:
New research suggests the real intent of the historic raid on Dieppe in 1942 was to steal a "Ultra" machine that would help crack top-secret German codes with the release of once-classified and ultra-secret war files.

http://globalnews.ca/news/274605/breaking-german-codes-real-reason-for-1942-dieppe-raid-historian/

http://www.canadashistory.ca/Community/Community-Features/Articles/A-New-Look-at-WW2-Dieppe-Raid


Cheers
Larry

I'm about a third of the way through Terence Robertson's "The Shame and the Glory: Dieppe."  This was published in 1962 and goes into a lot of the details about about the Dieppe operation from the planning stages to the actual operation and its aftermath. Right now I'm just at the chapter leading up to the attack.

Robertson had access to a lot of the planning documentation and was able to interview some of the senior personnel actually involved in the planning of the operation. And he mentions there was a lot of politics involved, including the fact that the Canadians were envious of their fellow Commonwealth allies who were in operations around the world, and the pressure on the Western allies from Russia to open a second front and relieve pressure on the Soviet Union.

So, while I find the idea that Op RUTTER/JUBILEE was a cover to capture an Engima machine to be pretty far fetched, Robertson does state there were a lot of shady characters wondering around and no one was quite sure who or what they were up to. He does state that there were at least three secret operations within the overall Dieppe raid.

One was the operation where soldiers of the South Saskatchewan Reg. were to escort a scientist to a German radar station at Pourville and recover parts of the radar and bring them back to the UK. And if they couldn't make it back - shoot the scientist! This part of the operation is detailed in James Leasor's book " Green Beach";

A second operation was by a Field Security team to capture the German divisional HQ and grab any documentation, codes, POW's, etc that they could find; and,

The third operation was to liberate any French resistance members held in the local prison and possibly bring some of them back to the UK.

Now, besides these three secret missions, Robertson does mentions other groups being involved in the operation, but unfortunately, doesn't provide any footnotes/endnotes to his sources.

For example, the observation by US Army Ranger, Lt Robert Flanagan who, prior to embarkation ended up in the wrong place, and observed several groups who included, "Royal Marines","Sudetan Germans" and a group, lead by a Russian individual who were disguised as Canadian soldiers. Their mission??

So, yes, its possible that there was a group/unit that was tasked with capturing an Engima machine, but to say that the whole operation was a disguise for capturing that machine is pure conjecture.



 

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Retired AF Guy said:
I'm about a third of the way through Terence Robertson's "The Shame and the Glory: Dieppe."  This was published in 1962 and goes into a lot of the details about about the Dieppe operation from the planning stages to the actual operation and its aftermath. Right now I'm just at the chapter leading up to the attack.

Robertson had access to a lot of the planning documentation and was able to interview some of the senior personnel actually involved in the planning of the operation. And he mentions there was a lot of politics involved, including the fact that the Canadians were envious of their fellow Commonwealth allies who were in operations around the world, and the pressure on the Western allies from Russia to open a second front and relieve pressure on the Soviet Union.

Robertson is questionable, been decades believe like U stated, provides not much on documents, sources, without footnotes just like many traditionalist; per say AT WHATEVER COST by R.W. THOMPSON Published 1956. Free PDF download: https://archive.org/details/atwhatevercost006210mbp

CBC Digital Archives.

Review of Dieppe book ‘The Shame and the Glory.’ Wallace Rayburn dissects Terrence Robertson's controversial account of Dieppe.
http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/dieppe-review-of-the-shame-and-the-glory

Dieppe: Review of 'The Shame and the Glory.' October 2, 1962 06:25 http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1791228371


One was the operation where soldiers of the South Saskatchewan Reg. were to escort a scientist to a German radar station at Pourville and recover parts of the radar and bring them back to the UK. And if they couldn't make it back - shoot the scientist! This part of the operation is detailed in James Leasor's book " Green Beach";

First-hand reports from the invasion of Dieppe: Canadian newsmen back from the beaches of Dieppe describe their ordeal ashore. http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/dieppe-first-hand-reports

Source See Dieppe Raid Wiki: However, despite the assault resuming, the South Saskatchewan’s and the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada, who had landed beside them, were unable to reach their target.[9] While the Camerons did manage to penetrate further inland than any other troops that day, they were also soon forced back as German reinforcements rushed to the scene.[12] Both battalions suffered more losses as they withdrew; only 341 men were able to reach the landing craft and embark, and the rest were left to surrender. For his part in the battle, Lieutenant Colonel Merritt was awarded the Victoria Cross.[23]

One of the objectives of the Dieppe Raid was to discover the importance and performance capability of a German radar station on the cliff-top to the east of the town of Pourville. To achieve this, RAF Flight Sergeant Jack Nissenthall, a radar specialist, was attached to the South Saskatchewan Regiment. He was to attempt to enter the radar station and learn its secrets, accompanied by a small unit of 11 men of the Saskatchewans as bodyguards. Nissenthall volunteered for the mission fully aware that, due to the highly sensitive nature of his knowledge of Allied radar technology, his Saskatchewan bodyguard unit were under orders to kill him if necessary to prevent him being captured. He also carried a cyanide pill as a last resort. Atkin 1980, p. 136.

Note some accounts claim 10, and more then one radar specialist.


For example, the observation by US Army Ranger, Lt Robert Flanagan who, prior to embarkation ended up in the wrong place, and observed several groups who included, "Royal Marines","Sudetan Germans" and a group, lead by a Russian individual who were disguised as Canadian soldiers. Their mission??

Read: At Whatever Cost provides a comprehensive account on ca 50 US Rangers, count how many were attached too Canadian Regiments, etc, so a group of 10-15? True many separate incognito missions in Dieppe, or just one mission, that's the definition of a "raid."  Now which one would be of the greatest impotence if U consider that Intel dropped at an alarming rate once the 4 rotor was in use...

So, yes, its possible that there was a group/unit that was tasked with capturing an Engima machine, but to say that the whole operation was a disguise for capturing that machine is pure conjecture.

Life Magazine 31 Aug 1942. Street Fighting In Dieppe by Montreal Newsman Wallace Reyburn,  London correspondent for the Montreal Standard; endured six hours ashore with the South Saskatchewan Regiment anecdote. 

https://books.google.ca/books?id=iU4EAAAAMBAJ&lpg=PA35&ots=dCPn85eiOm&dq=The%20British%20were%20going%20to%20have%20a%20cup%20of%20tea%20at%20German%20HQ%20at%20Dieppe&pg=PA35#v=onepage&q&f=false


Author Terence Robertson says that only three Canadian newspaper reporters were allowed to go on the raid: Fred Griffin of the Toronto Star, Ross Munro of Canadian Press and Wallace Reyburn of the Montreal Star. Because of military censorship, debriefings and other delays, the Canadian reporters were unable to file their stories for 29 hours after the operation had ended, creating a news vacuum that the Germans exploited.
http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/german-veterans-remember-defending-dieppe


The Information Front: The Canadian Army and News Management during the ... By Timothy Balzer claims: Wallace Reyburn was the only reporter to get ashore; p. 197.

Allies at Dieppe: 4 Commando and the US Rangers By Will Fowler… In Operation Jubilee attached to No. 4 Commando war correspondent A.B. Austin of the Daily Herald accompanying on Orange Beach landing…With extensive news coverage from journalist aboard the warships offshore and at port to conduct interviews when the troops returned. The Canadian Army public relations staff had requested that five US correspondents in the UK invited to cover the operation. Quentin Reynolds of Collier’s Magazine; Drew Middleton of Associated Press;  Ross Munro of Canadian Press: Fred Griffin of the Toronto Daily Star; & Wallace Reyburn of the weekly Montreal Standard, and filing for the British press known as Fleet Street consisting of ten national newspapers……..

•  Though they longed for liberation, the local French population of Dieppe were told not to assist the Allies and thereby incur the wrath of the occupying Germans. The RAF dropped leaflets and the BBC broadcast messages in French saying, "This is a raid and not an invasion."

•  Hitler was said to be so pleased with the "perfect discipline and calm" of the Dieppe citizens that he gave the mayor millions of francs for reconstruction, and released hundreds of French PoWs captured in 1940.(Source: Will Fowler, The Commandos at Dieppe: Rehearsal for D-Day)

Immediately following the raid, the German propaganda machine went into high gear. Their initial stories claimed that the attack was a full-blown invasion, and that it had been successfully repelled.


The London Gazette Publication date: 2 October 1942 Supplement: 35729 Page: 4323
https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/35729/supplement/4323


Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies: Review of Mark Zuehlke’s Tragedy at Dieppe: Operation Jubilee, August 19, 1942 by Mike Bechthold.

Any serious study of the Dieppe raid will start with Stacey’s chapters in volume 1 of the official history of the Canadian Army in the Second World War, Six Years of War (1955), which remain an excellent introduction to the topic, and T. Murray Hunter’s short monograph Canada at Dieppe (1982) offers a succinct and balanced narrative of the raid. Terence Robertson’s Dieppe: The Shame and the Glory (1962) is another traditional account which offers a good balance.

Controversy and Dieppe have gone hand-in-hand and there are a number of books that approach this from different angles. Brian Loring Villa contends that Lord Louis Mountbatten ordered the raid to take place without any reference to higher command (Churchill). This is a difficult case to prove and is based on the non-existence of a direct order or telegram from Churchill authorising the remounting of Operation Jubilee. Villa’s argument does not convince many historians, but his painstaking analysis of the planning for the raid remains unsurpassed. Brereton Greenhous has written a short book on Dieppe which presents an uncompromisingly critical interpretation of the raid. Greenhous argues that the plans for Rutter and Jubilee were fatally flawed, inexperienced Canadian troops did not fight well, and no worthwhile lessons were learned. He concludes that only gross German incompetence could have resulted in the success of the Dieppe operation.

Two other essential books on the raid are Denis and Shelagh Whitaker’s Dieppe: Tragedy to Triumph (1992) and Norman Franks, The Greatest Air Battle (1992). Denis Whitaker was a captain in the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry in 1942. He landed on the main beach at Dieppe, fought his way through the casino and into the town and managed to find his way back to England unwounded. His book, a collaboration with his wife, documents this experience but also offers a balanced appraisal of the raid which seeks to understand and justify the cost. Particular care is given to linking the failures at Dieppe to the successes at D-Day. Franks, an accomplished air historian, provides a narrative look at the air battle over Dieppe. It is unique as the only monograph to focus on the air to air battles over Dieppe.

One might conclude from reading Zuehlke’s book that there is nothing new to learning about the Dieppe Raid but nothing could be further from the truth. The Autumn 2012 issue of Canadian Military History focussed on Dieppe and presented a number of innovative, cutting-edge interpretations of the Raid. David Hall (King’s College London) examined the German perspective of the raid and showed how its outcome was used for propaganda purposes and how it influenced the German’s high command’s perception of their success in the war. Ross Mahoney (doctoral candidate, University of Birmingham) contextualised the air battle of Dieppe and emphasised how it grew out of the existing RAF doctrine for amphibious air support operations. Béatrice Richard (Collège militaire royal de Saint Jean) examined how the Dieppe raid was viewed in Quebec and fed into the myth that soldiers from that province had suffered a disproportionate number of casualties. These articles have little in common other than a focus on Dieppe but they show how an examination of various military, political, strategic and social issues can enrich our understanding of Canada and the Second World War.

Another new area of study was revealed last fall in the documentary “Dieppe Uncovered” which premiered on History Television on the 70th anniversary of the raid. Historian David O’Keefe argues that the real reason behind the Dieppe raid was to provide cover for an intelligence mission or “pinch operation” to get German naval code books related to the new German four-rotor Enigma machine. The “Ultra” secret – the Allied codename for intelligence gathered from reading Enigma traffic – was closely held by the Allies and not officially acknowledged until the early 1970s. It is not surprising that the role of a secret unit tasked with capturing German intelligence material was also kept out of the history books. O’Keefe is one of the first historians to shed light on the role of a special commando outfit, known as 30 Assault Unit, at Dieppe. The documentary examines the role of Ian Fleming, the legendary author of the James Bond novels, in coordinating the actions of this commando force at Dieppe. Like the operation in general, 30 Assault Unit did not succeed in its mission, but the revelation of this mission by O’Keefe greatly enriches our understanding of the raid and shows that new secrets can be revealed even 70 years later.

There are a number of minor problems with Zuehlke’s book which detract the reader. The 25-pounder guns of Roberts’ 1st Field Regiment, RCA are identified as “24-pounders” (p.65) and Air Vice-Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory, the air commander for the operation, is mid-identified as “Vice Air-Marshal Trafford.” (p.185). Another problem with the book is the nature of the index which appears to have been compiled using a key word search rather than by an informed eye. For example, if you are looking to read about the actions of the Royal Regiment of Canada on Blue Beach you will find no entry in the index under the regiment, but rather, you need to search for “Blue Beach.” This error is repeated for numerous topics.

http://canadianmilitaryhistory.ca/review-of-mark-zuehlkes-tragedy-at-dieppe-operation-jubilee-august-19-1942-by-mike-bechthold/



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