The War Illustrated No 37 Vol 2 May 17th 1940

Ear lyon the morning of April 9 German troops, profiting by what Mr. Chamberlain has stigmatized as“ long-planned, carefully-elaborated treachery against an unsuspecting and. almost unarmed people,” landed and established themselves in Trondheim, Norway’s strategic centre. Five days later a British naval detachment landed At Namsos the landing was made with­out opposition, and the commander, Brigadier C.G. Phillips, immediately pushed south in the direction of Trond­heim. It approached to within thirty miles or so of the city, but at Stenkjer not only did it encounter heavy enemy resistance in front, but German warships in Trondheim Fjord struck at Brigadier at Namsos eighty miles to the north of Phillips’ flank and the Germans were the city, and three days later still another able to cutoff and disperse some of the British naval force occupied Aandalsnes, more advanced of the British troops. 9 The most vivid ac­count of the engage­ment so far forth­coming is that given by a well-known American journalist, whose dramatic ac­count of the Oslo occupation we have printed in page 422. In a dispatch to the News,” Mr. Stowe wrote :“The British force which was supposed to sweep down from Nam­ sos consisted of one battalion of Territorials and one battalion of the King’s Own Royal Light Infantry, totalling fewer than 1,500 men, and averaging only one year’s service. These were dumped into Norway’s deep snows, quagmires and slush, without a single anti-aircraft gun, without one squadron of supporting airplanes, and without a single piece of field artillery, to faee crack German regulars, most of whom were veterans of the Polish campaign.” After four days’ fighting, continued Mr. Stowe, nearly half this initial con­tingent was either killed, wounded, or captured, “after being driven back in disorder from Vist, three miles south of Stenkjer.” These inexperienced and incredibly under­ armed British troops were decisively defeated. The British had no chance whatsoever of with­standing bombs and 3 orin. 6 in. shells with nothing but Bren machine-guns and rifles.” Following the publication of Mr. Stowe’s dispatch the War Office in London issued a communique which Brigadier H . de Rim er Morgan (left) was in commando f the first British troops to land a t A and a lsn e she was formerly in commando f the 2nd North u m b e rla n d Fusiliers. Brigadier C.G .Phillips (right) commanded the first T e rrito rials to land a t Nam s o s .^Photos, L .N.A .and Lafayette 120 miles to the south-west. Within a day or two there were landings at both ports o f British troops, part of the 49th (West Riding) Division of Territorials which had been originally destined for the campaign in Finland and had since been kept standing by in readiness for just such an emergency as had now arisen in Norway. 510 The War Illustrated May 17 th, 1940 Retreat From Trondheim: The First Phase Ends It was on April 9 that the Premier announced to a cheering House o f Commons that “His Majesty’s Government had decided forthwith to extend their full aid to Norway. ”Less than three weeks later the Allied Expeditionary Force was— as is described below— withdrawn from the Trondheim sector. British troops evacuated A and a lsn es, one o f Nor way’s small A tla n tic ports, because o f Ger many ’s persistent bomb attacks. Here are British sailors talking beside w h a twas once a house note the fire hose still lying in the street. The a m a zing p h otograp hon the righ twas taken by an R.A p.F. h togo rap her a split second after a string o f five bombs left the bomb e ron their way down to blowup a runway, the cross, atS tava n eager rod rome .Photos, British Official: Crown Copyright, and Planet News I
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