Parade No 121 Vol 10 December 5th 1942

“Africa( \o» a Halting Place” ~P.M. M Bff" Germans Enter Toulon Frencf* Sink Fleet M M HmM t tiRed Army’s MigKty Rebound (Britain Invades Mid«jet Vidiy Colony For a Britain possibly bewildered by unaccustom­ed good fortune, Winston Churchill in a Sunday night broadcast drew up a war balance sheet. “Although we are nearer the frontiers of deliver­ance” he said “ not let us be led away by any fair-seeming appearances of fortune. I know of nothing that has happened yet which justifies the hope that the war will not belong or that bitter and bloody years do not lie ahead.” O f North Africa, the P.M .said :“Since we rang the' bells for Alamein, the good cause has prospered... Another serious battle maybe impending at the entrance to Tripolitania. W e have the greatest confidence in Generals Alexander and Montgo­mery and in our soldiers and airmen, who have at last begun to come into their own. At the other side-of Africa, the tremendous joint undertak­ing... is a feat of organisation which will belong studied with respect... Africa is not a halting place it is a springboard... W e open the air battle on anew front... Our operations should enable us to bring the weight of the war home to the Italian Fascist inState a manner not hitherto dreamed of by its guilty leaders.' The P.M .spoke of Lt.-Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower's “mili­tary skill and burning energy.” O f France :“From the flames and smoke of the explosions at Toulon (see below )France will rise again." O f “the prodigious blows which Russia is strik­ing” :“When I was leaving the Kremlin in the middle of August, I said to Premier Stalin "When we have decisively defeated Rommel in Egypt, I will send you a telegram. And he replied ‘When we make our counter-attack here’ —and he andrew arrow on a map —'1 will send you one.’ Both messages have duly arrived. O f the future :Remember Hitler with his armies and his secret police holds nearly all Europe in his grip. He has millions of slaves to toil for him... Remember that u-boat warfare is not diminishing, but growing... It may well be that the war in Europe will come to an end before the war in Asia. If events should take such a course, we should at once bring all our forces to the other side of the world to the aid*of the United States and China and above all to the aid of our kith and kin in Australia and New Zealand.” France’s “Opportunity” As German and Italian troops entered the fort­ress of Toulon, last unoccupied slice of France, before dawn on Friday, the French scuttled their Toulon fleet. While German aircraft dropped flares over the three French battleships, seven cruisers, 33 destroyers and 21 submarines lying in the roadstead, most of the French crews open­ed sea-cocks and lit fuses. Many Frenchmen went down with their ships. Following a German com­munique that “part of the French Fleet has been scuttled” came a Vichy statement that “not a single ship is now afloat." A D .N.B. report spoke of the Fiihrer and the Duce ordering the seizure of Toulon to prevent the fleet “from making its projected escape.” Refraining from comment on the scuttling, Berlin Radio said :"France still has an opportunity to take her rightful place in Eu­rope but it lies with her to prove her desire for sincere and honourable collaboration." Over the B .B .C.’s French service, General Charles de Gaulle addressed France :“The fleet of France has disappeared. In one brief instant, the captains, officers and ratings saw through the odious veil of lies which, since June, 1940, hung before their eyes. In one brief instant, they under­stood to what a terrible end they had been led.” In London, The Times wrote :“Many hard things have been said since June, 1940, o f the men whose actions gave the appearance of greater loyalty to their conquerors than to their former It’s certainly embarrassing t o the under take r.allies. But it means so much to seamen to destroy, ships... that we can but offer our tribute and pro­found respect... Though these men knew... that the vengeance of a baffled and vindictive enemy might fall on them and their families they evi­dently did not hesitate.” Darlan anti de Gaulle Among the Fighting French, American recog-,nition of Admiral Jean F. Darlan as French civil boss in North Africa caused bitter heartburning. In reply to questions in the Commons, Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden said North Africa was mainly an American responsibility. President Roosevelt had made it dear that Darlan s status was a matter solely for Lt.-Gen. Eisenhower, Allied C.-in-C., North Africa, that D arlan’s re­cognition was a matter of military expediency and that use of Darlan's services had saved many lives and had greatly facilitated the rapid occu­pation of Morocco and Algeria. Voicing sympa­thy for de Gaulle, W ickham Steed said through the B.B.C . : “De Gaulle supported our cause when it was at avery low ebb... There is a strong feeling in England that de Gaulle, who has never changed his mind, cannot be expected to regard as his moral equal a manlike Darlan, who, to put it mildly, has often changed his mind. De Gaulle's record is a stronger title to the leadership of the Fighting French than the right which any ver­satile man and former collaborator of Hitler can claim.” However little they might alike reformed Quisling, the United Nations owed plenty toD ar­ lan. O f him Radio Roma said :“He is a double- crossing traitor. By dealing with him, the Anglo- Americans have been able to take possession of avast territory of 24,000 square miles practically without fighting.” W ickham Steed interpreted D arlan’s defection from the Axis camp as a warning to Adolf Hitler "that his allies and satellites will be prepared to cut adrift from the Axis ship before it goes com­pletely on the rocks.” The Vichy French fired on Fighting French troops when they invaded Reunion, an island in the Indian Ocean, 400 miles east of Madagascar, last week. Resistance was brief. Reunion’s area is 100 square miles its population of 200,000 is almost entirely French. The Allied action is -to prevent connivance with the Japanese. After 18 months of the heaviest punishment taken by any army in history, the RecL Army threatens the Germans with, to quote, the New York Herald Tribune, 'what may turnout to bethe greatest military disaster of the war.” The Bolshevik winter offensive of 1941 was a rally that of 1942 is a mighty rebound. It reveals the immense power and resources of the Soviet Union. In the Stalingrad pocket the Red Army has surrounded an Axis army of 250,000 and has gained control of the railway along which the Germans supplied that army. On the central front, a Russian offensive east of Velikie Luki and west of Rzhev has routed five German divi­sions and cut the German line. (“Strategicus" article and maps in page 12). Although the British First Army is on the out­skirts of its two immediate objectives, Bizerta and Tunis, the only large-scale infighting Tunisia has been the battle for air control. Among British internees released from French North African captivity by the Allied invasion are survivors from the cruiser Manchester, sunk in a Malta convoy. B.B.C. described their treatment as “ap­palling," British Official Press as “deplorable." Its chase of the Afrika Korps over the plains of Cyrenaica ended, the British Eighth Army now faces the more difficult country forming the El Agheila Line. Formerly just an Italian gen­ darmerie post on the Gulf of Sirte, Agheila is a midget castellated fort. (Desert stories and pic­tures in pages 4,5,6). "We made the remarkable discovery that a Heinkel is capable of carrying 6,400 tins of beer but beer is much harder to come by than Hein- kels.” This was revealed by Air Vice-M arshal A. Coningham, A .C.,.O Western Desert, in a re­view of the desert campaign. Other revelations :1) “Never before has there been such complete defeat of an enemy air force in the field as that inflicted on the Luftwaffe and Regia Aeronautica in North Africa —it was almost the wipeout of. a complete air force” 2) “The enemy air force neglected his ground troops shamefully... If the R.A .F. had done that sort of thing they would have wanted to change the colour of their uni­form” 3) “The speed of the Allied advance exr ceeded anything we had thought possible. It was only made possible by everybody doing 48 hours .work in 24”4) “Nobody denied the German had the ability to organise, but once solid pres­sure was brought to bear, he somehow became disorganised” 5) “There Was not one dive-bom­ ber attack on Allied ground troops during the whole campaign the enemy’s Stukas were limit­ed to level bombing.” European Roots in G.B. The week saw no change in the Far East. In New Guinea the subjection of the Japanese on the Buna beachhead might be lengthy and diffi­cult, the Australians and Americans being up against pillboxes and concrete emplacements. Both sides are using artillery and mortars. Anew training manual found on a dead Jap contained as its last sentence :“Do not return to Nippon unless you return victorious or wounded." After the war, Britain should have more friends in Europe than ever before. Speaking to the Fo­reign Press Association of the Allied troops in Britain, Air Minister Sir Archibald Sinclair said: “These men who refuse to accept defeat... have seen our life and become familiar with British cus­toms. Some have married British women. The roots of Scandinavia and Central Europe outreach and take new life in the English Midlands, in Edinburgh, in London, in the mountains of Scotland and Wales and in our blitzed cities. If there is to be better international understanding in future, these are the roots.” ---------------“Parade” Cover--------------- Beside admirable local food, the advancing Eighth •Army found in the small shops along the Cyre­ naica coast many European titbits. This British gunner bought in Barce a few days' bread ration. 3
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