Friendly fire

Discussion in 'General' started by RemeDesertRat, Mar 24, 2011.

  1. RemeDesertRat

    RemeDesertRat Very Senior Member

    Was the term friendly fire in use in March 1943? if not what other phrase would be used? Dad was wounded by an American air force plane in Tunisia whilst with 8th Army and i am trying to google for more info
     
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  2. stephenmyall

    stephenmyall Member

    Was the term friendly fire in use in March 1943? if not what other phrase would be used? Dad was wounded by an American air force plane in Tunisia whilst with 8th Army and i am trying to google for more info

    Im not trying to make light of your fathers misfortune but there was a saying in WW2
    When the Germans shoot, The British duck
    When the British shoot, the Germans duck
    When the Americans shoot, everybody ducks.:D
     
  3. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member Patron

    Was the term friendly fire in use in March 1943? if not what other phrase would be used? Dad was wounded by an American air force plane in Tunisia whilst with 8th Army and i am trying to google for more info

    During Operation Totalize in 1944, Flying Fortresses of the USAAF bombed Canadian 3rd Division in their forming-up area. In this sad incident, 3rd Divi suffered some 150 casualties inclding their G.O.C., Maj. Gen. Kellor who was wounded. This happened in broad daylight.
    Not sure if the term " friendly fire " was used back then. My Dad had another term for it which cannot be repeated here.

    Cheers from Canada
     
  4. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

    They also bombed and strafed 51st Highland Div. (on more than one occasion) The American airforce was known to them as the 'American Luftwaffe'. Didn't The Canadian General Crerar stop any American air support after one too many 'Friendly bombings' only accepting other air support.
     
  5. Bradlad

    Bradlad Senior Member

    Patton ordered a stop to US support raids just after D-Day ( Overlord ) as his troops were sweeping south that fast the scheduled raids couldn't keep up and plastered their own lads on the ground..
     
  6. Rob Dickers

    Rob Dickers 10th MEDIUM REGT RA

    Randy
    As we all know "Totalize" was'nt exactly a great success for Crerar and the 1st Cdn Army from the start.
    The HQ 2CdnAGRA got taken out by the USAF for 4 Days and lost 21men.
    During the battle things got so bad that the Artillery had a 'code word' for friendly fire.
    They got on the Radio and called "CHESSNUTS" + a map ref to all concerned.
    Rob
     
  7. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    I suppose this would come under the heading of friendly fire

    I first wrote about it on the BBC People's War site under the title of

    "The day my brother Mick nearly killed me"

    First of all, some background to the day itself.

    Mick, who is three years older than I, was called up in 1939 (whereas I was not called up until 1942).
    He was originally an Infantryman, serving in the 22nd Battalion, Royal Fusiliers and spent the next three years serving all over Britain, most of this time as a Sergeant Instructor. When the War Office needed more anti-tank units, he took courses on the 2-pounder, 6-pounder and eventually l7-pounder guns.
    In 1945 he heard of the formation of the Jewish Brigade and, eager to join in the fighting, volunteered to join the unit. He arrived in Naples on January l3th, l945, and after eight days in Eboli joined the Jewish Field Regiment at St Bartolemeo, leaving there on his birthday, the l5th of March, for a regimental hide about lO kilometres from the front. The Regiment, consisting of three battalions of excellent infantry, had already been in action and had fought superbly. Mick found himself in bivouacs near a dirty Italian farmhouse, close by some Polish troops near Forli and by March l945 his unit was an established part of the Eighth Army

    Anyway, as the war in Italy was coming to its close I had a letter from Mick to say that he had arrived in Italy and was a battery sergeant major with the Jewish Brigade.

    Once I knew this, I started looking out for regimental or brigade signs that would give me a clue as to where he was and so give us a chance to meet. The fates conspired against us, however, and as the action was so fluid at the time I had no chance to get away from my unit to find him.

    What did happen however, was that on the last big push over the Senio I discovered that the guns giving our own unit covering fire were actually the Jewish Brigade's. The inevitable happened, and when some shells fell short, SSM Busty Thomas, my tank commander, said to me in his lovely Welsh accent: "Your blooty brotter will bl****n' kill us yet!"

    Two diary entries of around that time make interesting reading:

    Mick: April lOth:
    We commenced firing again at 4.2Oam. Zero hour 04.3O. Worried about my brother Ron who's also in the region with the Eighth Army. All five boys of our family in the services.

    Ron: April 9th:
    Moved to other side of Traversare. Dug in and have bivvie to myself. D day and H hour have started. One rocket landed fairly near. Leaflets dropped.
     

    Attached Files:

  8. PeterG

    PeterG Senior Member

    It was a trench phrase in WW1, used of a shell heard either passing high overhead or one falling short in our lines, meaning in that case one of our own shells.

    According to Partridge, a friendly hostile was Royal Navy slang in WW2 for an enemy aircraft that doesn't attack.
     
  9. RemeDesertRat

    RemeDesertRat Very Senior Member

    Im not trying to make light of your fathers misfortune but there was a saying in WW2
    When the Germans shoot, The British duck
    When the British shoot, the Germans duck
    When the Americans shoot, everybody ducks.:D

    Lol!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: think dad would have agreed with you.
     
  10. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    It was called friendly fire as when we were strafed - many times - we made it known to the DAF culprits that we were unhappy and to soothe our ruffled feathers they would send us a case of Scotch in the spirit of friendship..... this friendly offering went immediately to the Officers mess - nothing for the lads though - that was the unfriendly bit.....
    Cheers
     
  11. RemeDesertRat

    RemeDesertRat Very Senior Member

    My Dad had another term for it which cannot be repeated here.

    Cheers from Canada

    Same for my Dad :D
     
  12. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member Patron

    Randy
    As we all know "Totalize" was'nt exactly a great success for Crerar and the 1st Cdn Army from the start.
    The HQ 2CdnAGRA got taken out by the USAF for 4 Days and lost 21men.
    During the battle things got so bad that the Artillery had a 'code word' for friendly fire.
    They got on the Radio and called "CHESSNUTS" + a map ref to all concerned.
    Rob

    Rob,
    Roger that. History has not been kind to Crerar. Thanks be to Monty for inserting Simonds at the correct time.

    Mind you, it is hard to move forward when your own airforces are dropping bombs on top of you. My Dad was outside of Caen when all hell broke loose. He had nothing kind to say about the American Airforce. In fairness, the RAF and RCAF had their own share of snafus along the way.

    Cheers from the colony

    Randy
     
  13. RemeDesertRat

    RemeDesertRat Very Senior Member

  14. idler

    idler GeneralList

    Desert Air Force
     
  15. RemeDesertRat

    RemeDesertRat Very Senior Member

    Desert Air Force
    Doh!!!! :banghead: :banghead: The amount of times I've seen the initials DAF!! :rolleyes:
     
  16. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Doh!!!! :banghead: :banghead: The amount of times I've seen the initials DAF!! :rolleyes:


    Probably on some cars a few years ago.:D

    The ones driven by elastic bands.;)

    Sorry but could not resist.

    Regards
    Tom
     
  17. RemeDesertRat

    RemeDesertRat Very Senior Member

    Probably on some cars a few years ago.:D

    The ones driven by elastic bands.;)

    Sorry but could not resist.

    Regards
    Tom
    :lol: :lol: :lol:
     
  18. Doc

    Doc Senior Member

    Basic military rule-- in all wars. "Friendly Fire Isn't"...... Doc
     
  19. SuperMarioBros.

    SuperMarioBros. Discharged

    Im not trying to make light of your fathers misfortune but there was a saying in WW2
    When the Germans shoot, The British duck
    When the British shoot, the Germans duck
    When the Americans shoot, everybody ducks.:D

    Honestly, I don't know where this joke came from(do they make a joke because Americans portrayed themselves in Hollywood as cowboys and they make a joke for the fun of it?) but i checked into Wikipedia friendly fire and there was lot of friendly fire incidents from the UK in WW2 too. The RAF did bombed a lot of British troops during Battle of El Alamein and Operation Crusader. In one incident in June 27th 1942 during a raid on Mersa Matruh, Egypt, the RAF heavy bombers pummeled the 4th County of London Yeomanry, British 7th Armoured Division and the British 3rd Hussars in error killing 359 troops and wounding 560.

    August 14, 1944: During Operation Tractable, RAF heavy bombers bombed Canadian and Polish troops in error, causing 490 casualties including 112 dead.

    April 28, 1944: In Exercise Tiger, in a biggest training incidents in WW2, British Royal Navy dropped live ammunition on American troops, killing 308(compare to 200 American troops killed by enemy fire in Utah Beach. In total 946 died on in exercise tiger).

    Oh and the RAF repeatedly bombed American troops in Mortain, France in August 1944. Even the RAF accidentally inflicted heavy casualties on the U.S. 13th Infantry in Saint Lo, France on July 25, 1944.

    I admit the US did lot of screws up during WW2 and i'm not berating British or anything but pretty much both RAF and USAAF at that time did lot of friendly fire in WW2 since they in fact both superpowers at that time.
     
  20. SuperMarioBros.

    SuperMarioBros. Discharged

    Oh ya friendly fire sucks though :(
     

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