Skip to comments.GUADALCANAL ISLAND BATTLE SUBSIDES; BRITISH TANKS WIN IN AFRICAN CLASH (10/29/42)
Posted on 10/29/2012 4:53:39 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
Marines inflict heavy losses on Japanese
Thursday, October 29, 1942 www.onwar.com
US Marines advancing on Guadalcanal [photo at link]
In the Solomon Islands... On Guadalcanal, the Japanese, stung by their heavy losses begin withdrawals from the coast to the west of the American beachhead. The Americans begin preparing to occupy this area.
In North Africa... The Battle of Alamein. British General Montgomery is persuaded to alter the direction of attack in the next phase of his offensive.
In New Guinea... The Australian forces make a final attack against the Japanese positions at Eora, forcing them to retire before they had completely withdrawn their troops.
From Australia... General Vasey is appointed to the command of the Australian 7th Division, replacing General Allen who has been judged as insufficiently forceful.
In Madagascar... East African Allied troops capture Fianarantsoa, the largest town in the southern portion of the island and continue to advance at the last of the Vichy French resistance.
October 29th, 1942
UNITED KINGDOM: London: A demonstration of protest against Nazi atrocities committed against the Jews of occupied Europe was held at the Albert Hall tonight. It was led by the William Temple, Dr. William Temple, who described what was being done as “so horrific that the imagination refused to picture it. It is a reversal to barbarism which seems to have the settled purpose of exterminating the Jewish people.”
Messages were sent to Jewish victims in ghettoes and camps. The first, from Mr. Churchill, read: “The systematic cruelties to which the Jewish people, men, women and children, have been exposed under the Nazi regime are among the most terrible events of history and place an indelible stain upon all who perpetrate and instigate them. When this world struggle ends with the enthronement of human rights, racial persecution will be ended.”
Leaders of governments in exile also sent messages. General Sikorski declared: “I assure Polish Jews that they will benefit from victory on equal terms with all Polish citizens.” The Czech foreign minister, Jan Masaryk, gave a similar pledge.
There are reports that over a million Jews have been exterminated since the war began. A government white paper with details is expected shortly.
GERMANY: U-646 commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
U.S.S.R.: Baltic Fleet, Ladoga and Onega Flotillas: Submarine “Sch-304”is sunk by a U-boat, in the Aland Sea. (Sergey Anisimov)(69)
According to Finnish sources this submarine was sunk by Finnish-laid mines yesterday. (Mikko Härmeinen)
Stalingrad: 60,000 German troops and two tank divisions launch a new attack, but advance just 50 yards.
Pinsk: The Germans massacre 16,000 Jews.
EGYPT: Last night the Australian Division makes progress with their attacks in the northern sector, drawing the German 90th Light Division, in the Battle of El Alamein.
Later in the morning General Montgomery alters the emphasis of his attack, Supercharge, south towards the Italians, now alone opposite Kidney Ridge. This is to be a breakout by X Armoured Corps, with the way opened by infantry. Montgomery asks Freyberg to lead it, who had started the battle with only two infantry brigades (plus 9th Armd Bde).
The New Zealanders had done wonders in the first two days and suffered accordingly. Freyberg said his division wasn’t up to it and refused. Montgomery offered him an extra British brigade, but he still refused, although “he was clearly weakening. ‘Very well Bernard’ said Montgomery ‘I’ll give you two infantry brigades’”. Monty also sent up fresh tanks for Freyberg’s armoured brigade. Monty said later: ‘I could see that the old warhorse was itching to fight again. This sort of show was very much his cup of tea and I knew he was the right man for it’. Freyberg agreed. (Michael Alexander)
MADAGASCAR: East African troops capture 440 Vichy troops at Alakamisy, and occupy Fianarantsoa. This is the most important town in the south of the island. They continue their advance towards the remaining pockets of Vichy French resistance.
NEW GUINEA: Australian units make a final attack against Japanese positions at Eora. The Japanese, planning to retire, are forced out ahead of schedule.
SOLOMON ISLANDS: In the aftermath of recent action on Guadalcanal, the Japanese are consolidating their units west of the Lunga Perimeter. Part of this action occurs as various units struggle in over the next several days. Much of their equipment has been left behind as the Japanese again fight the jungle and hunt for food during their trek. General Vandegrift and his staff are planning their follow up moves.
TERRITORY OF ALASKA: The Alaska Military Highway is opened.
CANADA: Corvette HMCS Mayflower commenced refit Pictou, Nova Scotia.
Destroyers USS Boyd, Halford and Leutze launched.
Submarine USS Cisco laid down.
Destroyer escorts USS Duffy and Emery laid down. (Dave Shirlaw)
ATLANTIC OCEAN: U-522 sighted slow convoy SC-107 with its 42 merchant ships. Another 17 boats are placed across its path. (Henry Sirotin)
US freighter WEST KEBAR is sunk by German submarine U-129, 14’ 57” N, 53’37” E, while en route from Freetown, Sierra Leone to St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. Three merchant seamen are killed; the survivors take to two lifeboats and one raft. (Rodney Sanders)(83)
At 0305 on 29 October, the Kosmos II was torpedoed by U-624, caught again fire and immediately settled. A third torpedo broke the ship in two, causing her to sink in 54°30N/29°55W. The Barrwhin picked up the most men after two and a half hours in a dramatic rescue operation. At 21.18 hours on 29 October, the Barrwhin was torpedoed and sunk by U-436 (Seibicke). Twelve men from Kosmos II died in the sinking, the survivors were picked up by the HMCS Kenogami (K 125) (Lt P.J.B. Cook) and landed at Londonderry. The Kosmos II had carried at least 70 passengers and 30 soldiers. A total of 33 lives were lost - The master, 18 Norwegian crewmembers, six Norwegian soldiers, one Norwegian and two Greek passengers and five Norwegian (newly educated) mates who had belonged to a group of 20 who were going to Dumbarton for further education and training. The three British landing craft HMS LCT-2190, HMS LCT-2192 and HMS LCT-2284 (each 291 tons) on deck were lost with the vessel.
At 0757 hours on 29 Oct 1942, the Pan New York (Master Hedley Vernon Thompson, lost) in station #43 of convoy HX-212 was torpedoed by U-624 about 550 miles west of Malin Head. One torpedo struck on the port side in the #3 tank and sprayed flaming gasoline all over the after part. The port bow wind blew the flames over nearly the entire length and ventilators aft sucked the fire down to the engine room and quarters of the crew. The flames destroyed nearly all lifeboats and rafts and burning gasoline swam on the water on the leeward side of the vessel. The survivors among the eight officers, 31 crewmen and 17 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 5in, one 3in, six 20mm and two .30cal guns) remained aft in the mess room. They waited more than nine hours and jumped at the first daylight into the water when a corvette was about 500 feet off the starboard side. HMCS Rosthern picked up 13 men, but one of these later died and two others were rescued by HMCS Summerside. Only one officer, twelve crewmen and one armed guard survived. The wreck of the tanker was sunk by the two corvettes with gunfire and depth charges about 11 hours after the attack.
U-159 sank SS Laplace and SS Ross.
U-203 sank SS Hopecastle in Convoy SL-125.
The Canadian Government merchant ship Bic Island (4,000 GRT), formerly the Italian Capo Noli, captured on 10 Jun 40 by HMCS Bras D’or, was torpedoed and sunk by U-624, Kptlt Ulrich Graf Von Soden-Fraunhoffen, CO, in the North Atlantic, in position 55.05N, 023.27W. All of her crewmembers plus the survivors of two other sunken merchant ships, Gurney E Newlin and Sourabaya, were lost. Bic Island was part of HX-212, a 43-ship convoy from New York City to Liverpool. She is not listed among the five other ships that were lost, which means that she was likely a ‘straggler’. The materiel lost from the five ships that were sunk while in convoy amounted to 21,000 tons of crude oil, 20,300 tons of fuel oil, 12,000 tons of petrol, and 8,200 tons of grain, plus the unspecified cargo from Bic Island. A total of 243 merchant sailors were lost from the five sunken merchant ships. The size of Bic Island’s crew is not known. The convoy eventually reached the UK on 02 Nov 42. The convoy was escorted by the American Escort Group A-3, commanded by Captain Paul Heineman USN. The warships included the Secretary-class USCG cutters Badger and Campbell, the British Flower-class corvette Dainthus and the Canadian corvettes Rosthern and Trillium. Three additional Canadian corvettes were assigned for passage and for subsequent duties in Operation TORCH - Alberni, Summerside and Ville de Quebec.
U-436 sank SS Barrwhin in Convoy HX-212.
U-509 damaged SS Corinaldo in Convoy SL-125.
U-575 sank M.V. Abosso at position 49.00N, 28.00W (approx.) [According to KTB: Qd. BD 3761 =48°51’00”N 28°25’00”W] (Lucas Bruijn).
UD-5 sank SS Primrose Hill. (Dave Shirlaw)
The scope of the war news is simply incredible.... SO MANY things going on, all at the same time.
I’m also a little surprised to see that the West knew so much about what was happening to the Jews in Germany, so early in the war. Well, not “early”, but... so LONG before the end.
It seems that we’ve stopped the Japanese in the Pacific and the Brits are taking it to Rommel in North Africa. Now those lazy Russians have to get off their butts and do some fighting!
More U.S. Marines Arrive in Britain.
Don’t think of the Marines being involved in Europe very often. More info on Colonel Clement:
On further thought makes sense, where the navy is the marines are also:
Three marines almost participated in the dieppe raid.
On 5 February 1942, the U.S. Navy established its first base on the European side of the Atlantic, in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, on the banks of the River Foyle. That forward base had become necessary be cause the fleet could not operate efficiently for any length of time more than 2,000 miles from a naval base.
An interesting incident took place during this period, which underscored the high degree of cooperation between the two Irish governments. A New Zealand bomber crash-landed in Eire and its crew expected to be interned for the duration of the war by the Irish Free State. However, with the unofficial blessing of the Irish Government, the RAF with the assistance of a detail from the Marine Barracks, dismantled the plane and removed it and its crew across the border.
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