Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Comments on the commando operation in Syria on 9 June 1941

The commando operation in support of the Australians on 9 June 1941 went very badly. The Australian Official History commented that while the commandos had bad luck, the operation was not well planned. There was no coordination between the Australian commander, Brigadier Stevens, and Colonel Pedder prior to the operation. They had a brief meeting in Nazareth, and that was all. The commando group had gone ashore about one-and-a-half miles north of the Litani River. They landed in a ill-chosen position that was well-defended. The result was Colonel Pedder and several more officers were killed. One group of commandos was captured by the French. Another group of commandos took some prisoners and then moved south to find the Australians. Another group that landed farther north was captured on 10 June at Alteniye. The commandos immediately to the north of the Australians had been badly shot up and had lost many men on the beach to artillery and machine gun fire. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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