Grandad’s WWII Diary – Tuesday 14th July (cont.) – Saturday 18th July 1942

July 14-18

Click here for entry for Thursday 9th July – Tuesday 14th July 1942

Tuesday 14th July 1942 (cont.)

… managed to break through and clear a passage – then got mixed up with three of his tanks but put them out of action after dodging about a lot.  Kept on advancing inflicting heavy casualties on him and much valuable material such as guns & tanks behind us – before daylight had taken our objective – then it started in earnest.  Anti-tank shells crashed overhead as his guns put 4 of ours out of action then over the rise came about 20 of his Mach IV tanks – never wish to be in any hotter spot – ordered to return(?) – losing far too many.  Got on top of ridge making another stand – if only we had some tanks or artillery there but nothing except rifles & bayonets. His tanks rounded hundreds of the boys up during that long morning – about 3 o’clock our tanks arrived fought as rear while we returned.  Poor organisation on our part that lost the day – there sure seems something wrong somewhere amongst our staff.  J Smith and others missing.  Again rode out on anti-tank portee.  Out of 39 men in our platoon who left Syria only eight remain.  I have been informed since that our Company Commander received the M.C (Military Cross).  For what?

(No entry for Wednesday 15th July)

Thursday 16th July

Day 466

Took up new positions in old Iti dug out.  Jerry seems to have more of our equipment than his own. Jerry attacked during afternoon but our armoured Div. drove him back.  Heard that 2 battalion going back to Maadi and bringing up 6th Brigade.  Jerry had range of position & shelling us heavily.

Friday 17th July

Day 467

Remained in position – armoured Div forward of us feel much safer.  6th Brigade arrived.  We are supposed to be resting but with shells dropping around you it is not very restful.  Several flights of Stukas over bombing our guns & armoured Div.

Saturday 18th July

Day 468

Artillery dual in progress. Much bombing taking ??? – first a swarm of Stukas dive then higher up is about 30 Junkers with heavy bombs. M.E109’s around all day strafing positions if sky is clear of our own planes.  Believe Tommies & Aussies going in tonight.

The following extract from World War 2 Timelines website in order to put the above into perspective.

14/07/1942 A British attack against axis positions to the South of El Alamein is repulsed.
15/07/1942 New Zealander troops attack ‘Kidney’ Ridge in three days of fighting, which costs Rommel 2,600 prisoners and 115 guns captured.

Click here for entry for Sunday 19th July – Friday 24th July 1942



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