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In the early months of 1942, the United Kingdom was being urged to open a second front in France to engage German forces that would otherwise be available for use against the Soviets. Landings in Norway or the Cherbourg Peninsula were determined to be impractical; however, a large-scale raid along the Pas de Calais coastline at Dieppe was considered possible and planning began in April 1942. The major force would consist mainly of Canadian troops landed and returned to the UK by the Royal Navy. The RAF would protect the operation from the air against the German Luftwaffe. Intelligence sources indicated that Dieppe was not heavily defended and the beaches were suitable for the landing of infantry and tanks. The plan was to hold the captured territory for two tides and then to withdraw the troops. This first plan was called Operation Rutter and included paratroopers. The raid was scheduled for July 7th but was postponed due to unfavourable weather conditions and then cancelled after an attack by German fighter-bombers on the troopships. The attack depended upon the element of surprise and after the attack, success of the operation was was deemed improbably. Continued pressure by the Russians, the Americans and the British public led the Chiefs of Staff to reconsider a raid at Dieppe. A commando force landing from the sea would replace the paratroopers. Landings at eight separate locations near Dieppe would be complimented with air bombing support and fire support from a naval force offshore. Operation Jubilee was set for August 18/19. The Operation began in the late evening hours of August 18th, 1942. The Objectives included seizing and holding the port of Dieppe for a short period, demonstrate it was possible and to gather intelligence. Upon retreating the intent was to destroy coastal defences, port structures and strategic buildings. It was hoped that the operation would boost morale and show a commitment of the United Kingdom to open a western front in Europe. None of the objectives were met. Allied fire support was inadequate and the landing force was trapped on the beach by obstacles and German fire. Less than 10 hours after the first landings, the last Allied troops had all been either killed, evacuated, or left behind to be captured by the Germans. Of the 6,086 men who made it ashore, 3,623 (almost 60%) were either killed, wounded or captured. The Royal Air Force lost 106 aircraft. The Royal Navy lost 33 landing craft and one destroyer. Operation Jubilee proved to be a disaster. Of the 4,963 Canadians who embarked for the operation, only 2,210 returned to England, and many of these were wounded. There were 3,367 casualties, including 1,946 prisoners of war; 916 Canadians lost their lives.
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Remembering Dieppe
Killed in Action on August 19, 1942 from Nova Scotia Cormier, Alvin Ross Essex Scottish Regiment, R.C.I.C. Duggan, James Anthony Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada, R.C.I.C. Graham, Lewis Robley Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada, R.C.I.C. Hartlin, Isaac Royal Canadian Artillery Lake, William John Royal Hamilton Light Infantry, R.C.I.C. MacLellan, John Neil Royal Hamilton Light Infantry, R.C.I.C. Monchier, Norman 403 Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Force Rhynard, Austin Joseph Royal Hamilton Light Infantry, R.C.I.C. Stuart, Kenneth MacDonald Royal Canadian Artillery
James Anthony Duggan
Austin Joseph Rhynard
John Neil MacLellan
William John Lake
Kenneth Stuart
Norman Monchier
Alvin Ross Cormier
Lewis Robley Graham