On This Day…November 8th.
On 8th November 1942 the first U.S. troops lnded in French North Africa with the invasion of Morocco and Algeria. It was hoped (rightly) that the French officers (who had reached an ‘accommodation’ with the Nazis) would baulk at fighting the Americans and switch allegiances. Have a look at how young that kid looks in the centre of photo.
The wreck of a Sea Hurricane Mk XII (JS327) shot down 1942 in Oran, Algeria 8th November 1942.
Actéon was a French Submarine of the Redoutable class. On the 8th November 1942 she sortied from Oran, Algiers, to attack the British landing forces as art of ‘Operation Torch’ (see pic 1 – above). She was attacked and sunk with the loss of all hands by the British destroyer HMS Westcott.
8th November 1965 was the date of ‘Operation Hump’ in the Vietnam War. Immortalised in song by the band, ‘Big and Rich’ (in a song called ‘8th November’) – this is a read introduction by Kriss Kristofferson…
“On November 8th 1965, the 173rd Airborne Brigade on “Operation Hump”, war zone “D” in Vietnam, were ambushed by over 1200 VC. Forty-nine American soldiers lost their lives that day. Severely wounded and risking his own life, Lawrence Joel, a medic, was the first living black man since the Spanish–American War to receive the United States Medal of Honor for saving so many lives in the midst of battle that day. Our friend, Niles Harris, retired 25 years United States Army, the guy who gave Big Kenny his top hat, was one of the wounded who lived. This song is his story. Caught in the action of kill or be killed, greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for his brother.”