Monday, May 09, 2011

Bad things begin to happen: 6 and 7 April 1941 in Greece

Despite the request by General Blamey to withdraw the New Zealand Division back to the Olympus passes, General Wilson still wanted them to hold more forward positions. The staff did begin to consider a move rearward to new positions, but while all that happened, there was a disaster in the Piraeus. On the night of 6 and 7 April 1941, the Germans bombed the harbour and detonated the explosives on the Clan Fraser. The explosion devastated the harbour facilities and sank 7 ships, and many lighters and caiques. The explosion drastically reduced the ability of the Piraeus to unload cargo from ships. After being closed for the next two days, when the port reopened, only five berths could be used of the original twelve. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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