Union Jack, August 16th 1943

UNION JACK AiigL‘6tl6.1943 UNION JACK EDITORIAL THE STORM GATHERS I N Sicily the Allied campaign is marching to its end.—the end of a beginning. In Russia the Soviet armies are now mounting not one major offensive but three. Allied aircraft ranging over Europe seek out more and more distant targets. And across the Atlantic President Roosevelt and Mr. Churchill are about to complete their plans for the next phase, whose content we can on7 y guess at, however shrewdly. * * * Nobody who knew anything about the nature of the task pretended that Sicily would be an easy conquest. This was not a tiny island, to be quickly reduced by concentrated bombing, but a mountain­ ous country larger than Wales, whose vital north­ eastern corner was defended by troops who used every device to buy time for Hitler. Reports of the past week’s fighting in particular show how much has depended on the successful clearance of obstacles to our advance. K We have made full use in this campaign of what have come to be regarded as the five essen­ tials for successful invasion—perfectly co-ordinated planning, a vast supply base reasonably near at hand, mastery of the sea, domination of the air, and the use of airborne troops in the first assault. The experience we have won will gain us more than the conquest of Sicily before this year is out. * * * The full scope of the Russian triple offensive cannot yet be defined, but however much or little territory can be regained before the mud of autumn clogs the mechanism of mobile war, its im­ portance is immense. For it is here above all that the German armies can be weakened to the point of breaking. Our air attack has already done heavy material and moral damage to the enemy, and has reduced his air force to a mainly defensweapon. Our political warfare, too, is beginning to show results„ Th& storm is gathering round Europe, and soon, toe may hope, it will break in full fury. ? T HIS is the story of a patrol in the country between Wau and Mubo—a lot of it Jap- infested, most of it Jap- threatened- Here is deepest jungle with native, footpads lor ill-marked trails. Rain falls day in, day out. The country is invariably clouded in : when the clouds The natives know that Austra­ lians like them and they savvy laboured, the swearing moref English well ' picturesque. The climb is no; They have comc to know the lhiD* °‘ thousan* JaP'H Sometimes ifs a crawl up mache knives especially for _ broken cliffs, sometimes a WHAT is il like, lliis Far East war, where Australians and Americans fight cunning battles with the wily Jap in jungles sticky with steamy heat ? Here is a revealing account by an Australian soldier of a patrol in New Guinea. ning deep as his own. evil little body—this is the patrol country. First, a patrol must be wise to its business. 'Trees, trails, hills, creeks must be sketched in the sub-conscious. No patrol in New Guinea moves without knowledge—if it does, it might have an unhappy ending. Lives slide along knife-edge ledges, well fitted for glazing batk- 4 ; ‘, nn tvrniZn hnrt fiaSe- 80 that a man be' r f r i S come one wilh t*10 Jungte. patrol. Ttme means much jjelmets are decked with reeds. E S , t h l$ s ^ ntry dictates the body withfolia^ length of spells. mUil. everything in the jungle fixed rendezvous. - Time and the Jap urge speed. * * * Together again, the grinning patrol moves toward home. But tile jungle boom has awakened the Jap. We know their patrols are already out. We hear the whip-crack of rifle fire and reach for dank earth. No one spots the Jap, We | but we reply with a burst of ^ onr, I rapid Tommy where we think might mean death. Norv the initiative is not in the hands i n°w o;f his hufaoab A of any officer or N.C.O .- cbarge wxll have to clear the every man has his own a Atmies usually charge madly, swear badly. But the Jap is no steel lover and has no itch to swop bayonets. He can use it himself and use it well when fortune and num­ bers favour him, but most times he just disappears. Wc can’t wait to mop up or the Jap will be there in force. The path clear, the patrol moves on. Speed for homo destiny in his own keeping. Anything serves for camou- ___- Still pools hide the puck- is in the make-up box. Maga- ripnpnd on inauisitiveness and puck—pidgin for crocodiles, zines are loaded, rifles cocked, team work mqu,sltlveI1CSS ana Wary patrol men know his bayonets fixed. The job is on. ‘ ' * * haunts, his superb camouflage We prcss on Awards our * * tt;hen log,Uke + £owri; objective - an ammunition We set out at dawn, loaded f.Ueam- But 50 far> though dump. Each man knows lift across the same hell-damned for emergency, a thin line of tterelm T e teen n air t a w * p a rt; there Is no overlapping. S f r , ifsotShow faster than ghostly figures haloed by liasnt been able to chalk no sh0Uted order. on the wav out S V e ^ c S ° « t e S o s W o S S U ^ m a ? ^ r S soon we surround the dump. Vm ™ d £ s the Jap follow IJr M * ™ C m M ce tra il Snakes are rare-th ey P e , approach Is silent, m ^ right through. He likes best lor Mel e P P ‘ • like the coastal belt with its J ^ gle so dense that vision t, 0 be in overwhelming strength. Thick jungle must be gi^amy warm climate. extends 10 or 20 yards but no make no mistake, he’s no hacked with the serviceable farther. push-over. mache knife, brambles and ^Four hours’ «w alk» along thorn kicked out of the way. this honeymoon trail brings Perspiration and rain makes yp}1 into Jap-held territory. clothes hang heavily after a Distance here is not a matter few hundred yards. of milcs« merely hours on the road. First obstacle is a narrow rushing stream. Native bearers swiftly fell a tree which crashes athwart the water. The thin line gingerly reaches for the other bank. Some slip, but as they are wet anyway It doesn't matter much. Then once more the plunge through the cver-thickening jungle. The way is uphill now. Con- i dition tells, breathing is The presence of the Jap now calls for craft and cun- with mind and eye set on the, Almost too suddenly the Camp looms close. It’s been dump hoves in sight. Charges a good day, a lucky day. To are quickly laid. A match morrow there’ll be another touches them off—sudden din patrol—and the Jap will still shatters jungle quiet. be there. The patrol melts backward, (From Australiaft Forces’ Journal SALT) Now W e’ re L ET'S make no“ mistake’ The concert, was arranged fcy workers today ? Why not a about it. The nights are Capt. Gladstone. Education few weeks of absolute rest and closing in The leaves are Officer of the Constantine quiet at our lovely Convales- turning brown and will soon area, at very short notice cent Depot ? » have fallen You wake up in the indeed, but the hall was full- middle of the night and aren't Some were there who had n / ,, sorrv vou have a blanket. And heard no musitf for a . year : " 1 1 J * ay sorry you ___- ___ all this within two short weeks never have I known a music of Bank Holiday ! - I audience* so quiet. - More ? Advt. in a London paper : « Grapes : One hundred UNDAUNTED A T the end of June; 1940, the Channel Islands were occu­ pied by the German forces. The fall of France and the depletion of the armed resources of Britain in the disastrous eveuu> that attended it, com­ bined with the geographical situation of the islands, rendered it impracticable to defend them effectively. The British Government removed all troops and declared them to be demilitarized. BITTER BLOW • It was a bitter moment for CHANNEL It is the earliest onset of M. Leupert, I feel, will be bunches, White Muscats; 50 the islanders. Throughout their autumn I recollect, and heard after the war not only bunches Black Alicantes; 100 long history, stretching back to altogether a most exceptional in Paris, but also in London pounds the lot.» f ” T ’ " year, as the strategist said sticking little flags into places where he had never thought to stick them before 1944. V nder statement % He gets about a bit doesn't; the times of William of Nor­ mandy. their sons had been in the forefront of battle, their bravery was proved in many . w ~ . F the hews from Italy doesn'tiE f i S S t t S t tSTtefcSSi Lance-Corporal ~ , . A cruel dilemma now faced give them up as a bad job and plant winter greens. hV «taid talking of Mr. and New York. His success is v , _ If . ChurchtlL a hint to the Welfare Depart- N o ic 1 o i i ’ r e T a lk in g EFORE the war many of us spent happy holidays in that little part of Britain across the water — the Channel Islands. Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney and Sark have been in the hands of the Nazis for three years. This article, based on such meagre facts as can be obtained, describes the state of life of the sturdy islanders. ~ Chine ennt ™nr island- In Guernsey counsels!population maintains its them. Ships were sent over were more divided. The schools fortitude. from Britain for their embarka- were evacuated complete.' i n the autumn of last vear lion. To leave and abandon till Women were sent awav In all fKnnconMc J n T T T orir^ H fnr anH hpid t J V xu an, thousands of men and women ment. a reason for congratu- Which mob are you in ? he or to and the * ft the population of Up to the ages of 70 suffered ...............................- m - ....... ......................... S o w n S A f t f t S . ? * left- 4 >lcmey. under the same fate as others in Nazi H | lat-ing the audience" which asked, belligerently. Symphonic Sentry fbroughthto back three times T h 0 L p ^ sai(1 the cther E had been here since the for encores. start, he said, and we talked about guards and what n i- E x n e r t___ nna fhtnire nhoiit. under the ° F UNNY, he said, this set was working without aerial and earth until I touched it. one thinks about under the African stars during a two- hour spell. He had a musical and a good memory, said, and he had acquired the habit of silent self-performance___ ^ R n n t/ m tir of orchestral music which he« O o e s ix o m a n iic remembered well enough to As soon as it starts getting imagine in full detail and dark at home, he said, it is colour. better. Ah, that’s different, said the Fusilier. In Jersey, opinion inclined to remaining, and only a few thousand refugees left the ’ c o m . P l» in f c l o n , T „ n i , “ * Summer, 194-3 Merrily flowed the River Rhine, Busily the burdened Thames: He admitted to__c\ sticky I He was talking of radio re- York with commerce oment when the orderly offi- eeptlon, but I can think of throbbed while fine T- other tilings which are better gowns in Paris gleamed when it’s dark, such as eating f Witj1 gems; * fish and chips off a green foot- In these flelcjs ’ bloomed the ball special, with a half moon ^ . fruitful vine moment cer came round in the middle of Beethoven’s Pastoral Sym­ phony and he got all mixed up between his challenge and the variations as writetn. Coda O N the walls of La Scala in Milan, Italians have written « Bring Back Toscanini.® That explosive master of the orch- showtng up the delicate' profile of your latest piece of Dresden china. Home Hint L ORD WOOLTON recom­ mends that people should estra left Italy when Fascism take water with their whisky started trying to boss the arts instead of soda. You’ll get around. Toscanini’s farewell used to it, he says. words put Musso where he belonged. « I t is Mister Mussolini, but it Is Maestro Toscanifli,» he said. These Musical Notes M USIC is In demand among British $pldier§ in North tea. Last week at the _ .jlno in Constantine, M. Alexander Leupert, Lieutenant the French Army and iady known as a pianist in ^nce, gave a piano recital. We’ll do our best, Sir, said a Fusilier of our acquaintance. North African Outpost N EWEST n,ews-sheet in North Africa is the Out­ post, weekly cyclo-styled paper of a convalescent depot. Gnr. McArdle is editor, a Slam of Serjeants assists him, a Lieut­ enant is adviser. «H ave you,» they ask in their journal. «m ade uf) your mind where to spend your holi­ day, so necessary to busy war- the very guns of Cherbourg, ot the population of 1,500, all but a very few who left for Guernsey sailed for England. In the middle of all this the occupied countries. They were deported to camps in France and Germany. Despite their poor standard in me miaaie 01 ail tms tne 0f living, those remaining made Germans l^ orm g the pro- collections of shoes, clothing clamation f of demilitarization. food for them. Shop- bombed the harbour of St. keepers gave them first call on Hclier and St. Peter-Port, and what stocks they had. Fare- next day invaded the island? services were held in the With luscious grapes to load their stems. Fire-blackened now that once- red soil, And dried the leaves, so greer^ before * Where shattered tanks and debris spoil, Those twisted roots give sap no more; And must we say their‘aching toil Of Peace, and War. men vainly bore! Vain was the vine-lord’s former care— As the bitter tears by loved ones shed For the Flower of Youth that perished there; Now, where it fell, new labourers tread, Rich fruit that fertile earth shall bear, To blossom where brave hearts 'once bled. Proud flags in Victory wave! What then? Snail grapes spring sweeter from the vine, Refreshing every breed of Men? Or shall Fools, Crazed with blood-red wine. Raise it. to toast «Der Tag» again? —A. V. J. Steele. Ship From Home She streaks across the hazy blue proudly leading her charges to their berth: who follow her in regular array and always carried out her orders whatever she might say. Signals flash, squat tugs likt ducks upon a pond, grow fussy and impatient to complete another journey done. The great ship slides, deprived of power, to her appointed place brown.faces line her sides and wonder what the future holds. How close to English soil you must have been pray tell me all that you have heard and seen. —F/L Elliott Smith. by air. A Channel Island Refugee churches. The financial aspect of life Committee sprang into being to ^ the islands is interesting, look after the people evacuated when the branches of British from these islands of the banks evacuated no balances Norman Appendage—for such were left, and only the skeleton is the official^ name for thfc 0f local currency organisation Channel Islands. NEWSPAPER remained. The Germans re­ created a local currency and the remaining nuclei of the iu rnrn fVinTi fin cnpmfinc H atrr» British banks arc reported to More than 60 societies have ^ madp advances of the been formed all over Britain— nave maoe aavances 01 and a small newspaper brings equivalent of several million pounds sterling to the local n S n S S A - State* What the future of w S £ this debt will be and who will the Forces all over the world. carry the burden of the re- Many have given their lives, some are prisoners of war, others have gained decoration —one V.C. was won by Major le Patourel at Tebourba. Conditions in the islands ar* only partly known. Occaslon- instatcment of war damage can only be surmised. PROBLEMS Other problems of a like t____ w________ _____ _ nature also arise. Can the ally an escape occurs, and a few famous herds be re-established? more details of information are i What proportion of ttye popula- learned. In sum, the tale is one of hardship but not of despair. FORTITUDE The loyalty of the inhabi­ tants remains undimmed, the privations are cheerfully borne. Food is short, monotonous and inadequate. Clothing is scarce. The deathroll among >the elderly is high. But the tion will wish to return home after years of exile, new life and with an outlook different from those who have remained? Careful planning and fore­ sight will be needed for the major difficulties of the social and economic rebirth of the islands to be avoided. One happy augury is the islanders’ characteristic spirit of sturdy self-help.
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