So war wives should be prepared to ‘start over’ with their husbands after the duration
By Ruth Millett
How monopoly can be built up and keep stranglehold revealed
By Thomas L. Stokes, Scripps-Howard staff writer
By Ernie Pyle
Somewhere in Sicily, Italy – (August 11, by wireless)
Probably it isn’t clear to you just how the Army’s setup for the care of the sick and wounded works on a battlefront. So, I’ll try to picture it for you.
Let’s take the medical structure for a whole division, such as the 45th, which I have been with recently. A division runs roughly 15,000 men. And almost 1,000 of that number are medical men.
To begin right at the front, three enlisted medical-aid men go along with every company. They give what first aid they can on the battlefield. Then litter-bearers carry the wounded back to a battalion aid station.
Sometimes a wounded man is taken back right away. Other times he may be pinned down by fire so that the aid men can’t get to him, and he will have to lie out there for hours before help comes. Right there in the beginning is the biggest obstacle, and the weakest feature of the Army’s medical setup.
Once a soldier is removed from the battlefield, his treatment is superb. The battalion aid station is his first of many stops as he is worked to the rear, and finally to a hospital. An aid station is merely where the battalion surgeon and his assistant happen to be. It isn’t a tent or anything like that – it’s just the surgeon’s medical chest and a few stretchers under a tree. Each station is staffed by two doctors and 36 enlisted men. They are very frequently under fire.
Clearing stations leapfrog
At an aid station a wounded man gets what is immediately necessary, depending on the severity of his wounds. The idea all along is to do as little actual surgical work as possible, but at each stop merely to keep a man in good enough condition to stand the trip on back to the hospital, where they have full facilities for any kind of work. Hence if a soldier’s stomach is ripped open, they do an emergency operation right at the front but leave further operating to be done at a hospital. If his leg is shattered by shrapnel, they bind it up in a metal rack, but the operating and setting isn’t done till he gets back to the hospital. They use morphine and blood plasma copiously at the forward stations to keep sinking men going.
From the battalion aid station, the wounded are taken by ambulance, jeep, truck or any other means back to a collecting station. This is a few tents run by five doctors and a hundred enlisted men, anywhere from a quarter of a mile to several miles behind the lines. There is one collecting station for each regiment, making three to a division.
Here they have facilities for doing things the aid station can’t do. If the need is urgent, they redress the wounds and give the men more morphine, and they perform quite a lot of operations. Then the men are sent by ambulance on back to a clearing station.
The 45th Division has two clearing stations. Only one works at a time. While one works, the other takes a few hours’ rest, then leapfrogs ahead of the other one, sets up its tents and begins taking the patients. In emergencies, both clearing stations work at once, temporarily abandoning their rest-and-leapfrog routine.
All these various crews – the company aid men, the battalion aid station, the collecting station, and the clearing station – are all part of the division. They move with it, fight when it does, and rest when it does.
Stations can move quickly
Then back to the clearing stations the hospitals begin. The first hospitals are usually 40 miles or more back of the fighting. The hospitals are separate things. They belong to no division, but take patients from everywhere.
They get bigger as you go back, and in the case of Sicily patients are evacuated from the hospitals right onto hospital ships and taken back to still bigger hospitals in Africa.
The main underlying motive of all frontline stations is to get patients evacuated quickly and keep the decks clear so they will always have room for any sudden catastrophic run of battle casualties.
A clearing station such as the one I was in is really a small hospital. It consists of five doctors, one dentist, one chaplain, and 60 enlisted men. It is contained in six big tents and a few little ones for the fluoroscope room, the office, and so forth. Everybody sleeps outdoors on the ground, including the commanding officer. The mess is outdoors under a tree.
The station can knock down, move, and set up again in an incredibly short time. They are as proficient as a circus. Once, during a rapid advance, my station moved three times in one day.
U.S. borrows landing behind enemy line for use in Sicily
By Glen Perry, North American Newspaper Alliance
Value of business stocks drops $650 million to $26 billion
U.S. State Department (August 14, 1943)
|United States||United Kingdom|
|Admiral Leahy||General Brooke|
|General Marshall||Admiral of the Fleet Pound|
|Admiral King||Air Chief Marshal Portal|
|General Arnold||Field Marshal Dill|
|Lieutenant General Somervell||Vice Admiral Mountbatten|
|Vice Admiral Willson||Lieutenant General Ismay|
|Rear Admiral Cooke||General Riddell-Webster|
|Rear Admiral Badger||Admiral Noble|
|Major General Handy||Lieutenant General Macready|
|Major General Fairchild||Air Marshal Welsh|
|Brigadier General Kuter||Captain Lambe|
|Brigadier General Wedemeyer||Brigadier Porter|
|Commander Freseman||Air Commodore Elliot|
|Commander Long||Brigadier Macleod|
|Brigadier General Deane||Brigadier Redman|
|Captain Royal||Commander Coleridge|
August 14, 1943, 4:30 p.m. Secret
Admiral King said the principal operations against Japan at present taking place were those directed on Rabaul. These were being delayed by lack of means. Tie had said at Casablanca, and he must now repeat, that lack of means was in his opinion caused by failure to consider the war against all three Axis Powers as a whole. If some 15 per cent of resources of the United Nations were now deployed against Japan, then an increase of only five per cent would increase by one-third the resources available whereas a decrease of five per cent of the forces deployed against the Axis in Europe would only mean a reduction of six per cent. Air power was lacking, and at present all naval air forces not required for the U-boat campaign were being sent to the Pacific. Consequent on the TRIDENT decisions, operations against the Mandates had been planned and would begin on 15 November against the Gilberts. This particular line of advance had certain disadvantages, but had been necessary, firstly, since it would protect Samoa, the weak spot on the line of communications to Australia; secondly, there were air facilities available in the Ellice Islands; and, thirdly, the relative proximity of this line of advance toward the operations in Rabaul would enable forces to be shifted from one to the other. The United States Chiefs of Staff memorandum set out their proposals for the war against Japan in the relatively near future. In general, these envisaged an advance headed on Luzon by two routes, one from New Guinea, and the other through the Mandates. This plan would have the advantage of obviating the necessity for fighting for the Dutch East Indies which, if the Philippines were captured, would automatically fall to us.
In the North Pacific the attack on Kiska was planned for tomorrow. There were indications that at least a partial evacuation might already have taken place there, but the operation had been planned on the supposition that the original scale of defense still existed. There was a third possible line of approach which was through the Kuriles via Paramushiru.
It was, in his opinion, most important to plan how best the preponderance of forces now employed against the Axis in Europe could be transferred and brought to bear against Japan. It would appear that the air power which would be available could not be fully used in an advance through the Islands and therefore the use of China as a base for air action against Japan became very important.
Admiral Leahy stressed that the campaigns in Alaska, against Rabaul, in the Central Pacific, and in Burma all formed part of the complete campaign against Japan. The defeat of Japan must be accomplished at the earliest possible date by the use of the maximum possible effort. The requirements for the plan, the forces which could be made available, both immediately and on the defeat of Germany, and the method by which those forces now employed against Germany could be diverted to Japan must all be studied. Every effort was now being made with the insufficient forces available to wear down Japanese resources, and her resistance was becoming less effective, but an immediate assessment of the availability of resources as soon as Germany had collapsed must be made.
General Marshall said it was important to decide on the bases required to exploit our available means. In the Pacific, adequate shipping had proved a bottleneck since heavy demands were made on account of the necessity for transferring troops to recuperate after long service in difficult and unhealthy country. Every effort was being made to render bases, particularly air bases, more healthy. The same problem of transferring troops, owing to bad climate, existed in the Aleutians.
An interesting factor in the present campaign against Japan was the heavy air losses which she was sustaining, not only in the air but in cargo and troop-carrying vessels. All operations in the Pacific were related to those in Burma. There were two matters on which differences of opinion existed – firstly, the importance of China as a base, and, secondly, the possibilities with regard to the use of Chinese manpower. General Stilwell’s view, which he shared, was that properly led, the Chinese troops were an important military factor.
General Marshall then read out a telegram he had received from General Stilwell, giving the details of the equipment and efficiency of the Chinese troops now in Ramgarh and Yunnan and outlining possible employment for these forces. General Stilwell stressed the importance of an early campaign to reopen the Burma Road.
There was an alternative route to China via Sumatra, Singapore and Camranh Bay, though this would entail a heavy shipping commitment. There was a project, which will be further explained by General Somervell, to lay a pipeline for gasoline from Calcutta into China. There seemed to be four issues which must be decided. Firstly, what was the value of Chinese troops; secondly, could we afford to take so little action with regard to China that the present government would fall; thirdly, if we employed only air forces from China, would not the Japanese reactions be so strong as to cut the line of communication to them, and, fourthly, in an operation through China was it essential to capture a port for heavy build-up of supplies and thus link up with the naval operations across the Pacific.
He regretted immensely that there was no air communication between Australia and Ceylon. The interests of the two commands were mutual, and the psychological factor of a gap of 10,000 miles, which was not bridged, was serious. In his view it was important to find the speediest method of bringing pressure to bear on Japan itself and it might well be that operations through China would produce the result faster than fighting our way through the Islands.
It was essential to link Pacific and European strategy. Movements of ships from the Mediterranean must take place in the next few days if operations from India were not to be delayed, and a decision must be taken. It was important that no time should be lost in agreeing on a general plan for the defeat of Japan since the collapse of Germany would impose the problem of partial demobilization and a growing impatience would ensue throughout the United States for the rapid defeat of Japan.
General Arnold said that in the early days of the war with Japan a holding policy had been adopted. Now superiority was being achieved. In the air, over the last six months, the Japanese known losses had been four times the combat and operational losses of the U.S. Air Forces opposed to them.
In the Pacific, airfields would not be available in which to base the air forces which would be released after the defeat of Germany. Only China provided the necessary facilities. At present the number of units which could be deployed depended directly on the capacity of the air-route. This route had achieved 4,000 tons in July and this would, he felt sure, increase, but a 4,000-ton capacity was sufficient only to enable General Chennault’s 223 aircraft to undertake 10 operations each per month. The heavy bomber group now operating in China against Hanoi, Hong Kong and Shanghai was forced to do three trips into Assam for every one operational sortie. In order to release tonnage on the air route a plan had been worked out to run a pipeline capable of taking six million gallons per month (approximately 20,000 tons) into China. Even this amount would only enable five hundred heavy bombers to undertake 10 missions per month, and an additional one thousand tons of gasoline would be required to provide for the necessary fighter protection.
The opening of the Burma Road was, from the air point of view, essential, together, if possible, with a port on the east coast of China through which the air forces could be adequately supplied.
The northern air line of approach to Japan via the Kuriles was hampered by the worst weather in the world and lack of bases. At a maximum, only one or two groups could be employed from this area. Island facilities now available could only accommodate some 20 groups, whereas if Germany were defeated some 50 groups of heavy bombers would be released from the U.K. alone, in addition to those from the Mediterranean area. The situation, however, was hopeful. Japanese aircraft production was estimated at only 600 aircraft per month, He was convinced that heavy bombing of their homeland would defeat the Japanese, “who could not take it.”
At the request of General Arnold, General Somervell outlined the plan for the pipeline into China. It would lead from Calcutta to Ledo and between these places would be a six-inch line in order to take the load off the bad communications from Assam. From there on it would be a three-inch line running through Fort Hertz to Kunming. The building of the line was not dependent on further operations in Burma though this would probably be necessary to insure its security. The line could be completed in seven months and would require only 15,000 tons of supplies. The necessary piping and installations were already available in the United States and all the necessary plans had been prepared.
Sir Alan Brooke asked that a paper giving a brief outline of the plan might be submitted for study by the British Chiefs of Staff. He was in entire agreement as to the necessity for the earliest possible completion of a general plan for the war with Japan.
It was essential to decide on a policy for the employment of our forces and to allocate tasks to be undertaken either separately or jointly. The British were faced with the problem of partial demobilization after the defeat of Germany. Many of the British troops had been abroad for over seven years and a scheme was being worked out to insure that those troops who were best trained were retained, without inflicting unnecessary individual hardships. If major operations were to be undertaken from India, that country must be developed as a base. Its capabilities were at present small and its communications bad. Airfields, ports and communications must all be developed, and the extent of this development was dependent on the plan decided on.
The relative advantages of the opening of the original Burma Road or the seizure of a port in China must be examined, together with the time factor, in relation to the working of the Burma Road at its maximum capacity. Plans had been worked out for advances from Imphal, Ledo and Yunnan into Burma, together with landings on the Arakan Coast. The British Chiefs of Staff had considered proposals put forward by Brigadier Wingate for the increased employment of long-range penetration groups in conjunction with the main advances. These groups relied on the Japanese out-flanking tactics but whereas the Japanese outflanking movements consisted of four- or five-mile sweeps, Wingate’s method used 40- or 50-mile sweeps and used units of the size of a brigade group. These groups took pack transport and wireless and could, when necessary, be maintained from the air. They would reach far into the area of the Japanese lines of communication in conjunction with the main advances. A second brigade group was already being formed and it was hoped to form a third, one of which could operate with the Chinese forces from Yunnan by cutting Japanese communications with Mandalay. Another would operate between the Ledo and Imphal advances, and a third to the west of the Imphal Road. He felt that the United States Chiefs of Staff might wish to hear from Brigadier Wingate his views on the use of long-range penetration groups.
The British Chiefs of Staff had only recently learned, however, of the very serious results of the floods in Assam, which would have very serious effects on future operations in Burma, These results had not yet been assessed and he suggested that a small committee consisting of General Somervell, General Riddell-Webster and an officer from the Commander in Chief’s Staff in India should examine and report to the Combined Chiefs of Staff the effects of the floods in Assam on future operations in Burma.
In addition to the plans for Burma a study had been made of an alternative operation on the northern tip of Sumatra. This might either be an operation in itself, aimed at forming a base from which Japanese forces and lines of communication could be attacked, or it might be the first step to an attack on the Malaya Peninsula in the neighborhood of Penang with an advance on Singapore. In the former case some two to four divisions would be required, but in the latter case the forces required would render the operation impossible of achievement until after the defeat of Germany. If, however, only the tip of Sumatra was attacked, though it would result in the diversion of important Japanese forces in reaction to it, it would have the disadvantage of giving prior warning to the Japanese that an attack on Malaya was possible and they would therefore increase their defense in that area. Before, however, further examining the Sumatra plan he suggested that operations in Burma should be examined, possibly based on a later date than originally envisaged.
Sir Charles Portal said that he strongly endorsed the view that an early decision on the plan for the defeat of Japan must be taken. Air forces would be piling up as soon as Germany was defeated. British production of heavy bombers alone would amount to some five to six hundred a month, with four hundred crews. He was interested in the statement that adequate island bases could not be found in the Pacific to deploy large air forces since in Malta, which was a very small island, some 500 aircraft had been operating. After the defeat of Germany sufficient shipping should be available to maintain these island air bases.
General Arnold explained that most of the islands in the Mandated area were atolls, with very limited land area available and complicated topographical features.
The Combined Chiefs of Staff: Agreed that a small committee should be formed which would include General Riddell-Webster, Major General Mallaby, General Somervell, and Admiral Badger, to examine and report on the effect of the recent floods in India on the projected Burma campaign.
Washington, August 14, 1943.
The President of the United States and the Prime Minister of Great Britain, after consultation with the British Admiralty, the United States Navy Department and the Canadian Department of National Defence for Naval Services, have issued the following monthly statement on the progress of the anti-U-Boat war:
During the month of July very poor results were obtained by the U-Boats from their widespread effort against the shipping of the Allies. The steady flow of trans-Atlantic supplies on the greatest scale has continued unmolested, and such sinkings as have taken place in distant areas have had but an insignificant effect on the conduct of the war by the Allies. In fact, July is probably our most successful month, because the imports have been high, shipping losses moderate and U-boat sinkings heavy.
Before the descent upon Sicily an armada of warships, troop transports, supply ships and landing craft proceeded through Atlantic and Mediterranean waters with scarcely any interference from U-boats. Large reinforcements have also been landed in that Island. Over 2,500 vessels were involved in these operations and the losses are only about 80,000 tons. On the other hand, the U-boats which attempted to interfere with these operations suffered severe losses.
Our offensive operations against Axis submarines continue to progress most favourably in all areas, and during May, June and July we have sunk at sea a total of over 90 U-boats, which represents an average loss of nearly one U-boat a day over the period.
The decline in the effectiveness of the U-boats is illustrated by the following figures:
In the first six months of 1943, the number of ships sunk per U-boat operating was only half that in the last six months of 1942 and only a quarter that in the first half of 1942.
The tonnage of shipping in the service of the United Nations continues to show a considerable net increase. During 1943 new ships completed by the Allies exceed all sinkings from all causes by upwards of three million tons.
In spite of this very favourable progress in the battle against the U-boat, it must be remembered that the enemy still has large U-boat reserves, completed and under construction. It is necessary, therefore, to prepare for intensification of the battle both at sea and in the shipyards and to use our shipping with utmost economy to strengthen and speed the general offensive of the United Nations. But we can expect continued success only if we do not relax our efforts in any way.
|United States||United Kingdom|
|President Roosevelt||Prime Minister Churchill|
From an informal memorandum dictated by Harriman at Québec:
Gray was telling the Prime Minister (in the presence of the President) all about Ireland and how it should be dealt with. The Prime Minister seemed unimpressed.
At dinner the Prime Minister sat on Mrs. Roosevelt’s right and I was on her left.
The Prime Minister described the kind of ‘fraternal relationship’ that he would like to see accomplished between the U.S. and the British after the war. This loose concept of ‘fraternal relationship’ he feels is much better than any attempt at more definite association or understanding as more definite arrangements are subject to misunderstandings whereas loose concepts become realities in the public mind and, if flexible enough, can be adjusted to historic developments.
Mrs. Roosevelt seemed fearful that this might be misunderstood by the other nations and weaken the United Nations concept, to which the Prime Minister did not agree as any hope of the United Nations would be in the leadership given by the intimacy of the United States and British in working out understandings with the Russians – and the Chinese too, he conceded, if they become a nation…
The President told me he wanted me to see that Lew Douglas was given information and fully consulted on all shipping matters as he considered that shipping was the key to strategic agreement.
He said that he wanted to have a quiet dinner on the night of his arrival, Tuesday, with Admiral Leahy, Harry and myself to get a report on where the discussions stood…
U.S. Navy Department (August 14, 1943)
Pacific and Far East.
U.S. submarines have reported the sinking of seven enemy vessels and the damaging of five others in operations against the enemy in the waters of these areas, as follows:
- 1 large transport
- 1 medium‑sized passenger freighter
- 2 small freighters
- 1 small schooner
- 1 medium‑sized supply ship
- 1 medium‑sized cargo vessel
- 1 medium‑sized freighter
- 1 medium‑sized tanker
- 1 medium‑sized cargo vessel
- 1 small freighter
- 1 small cargo vessel
These actions have not been announced in any previous Navy Department Communiqué.
Völkischer Beobachter (August 15, 1943)
dnb. Aus dem Führer-Hauptquartier, 14. August –
Das Oberkommando der Wehrmacht gibt bekannt:
Der Schwerpunkt der Kämpfe an der Ostfront lag gestern weiterhin im Raum südwestlich Bjelgorod. In der hin und her wogenden Schlacht erlitten die Sowjets wieder sehr hohe blutige Verluste. Am Kubanbrückenkopf griff der Feind nur mit schwächeren Kräften an.
Im Raum westlich Orel sowie an der Front südlich und südwestlich Wjasma unternahm der Feind zahlreiche Angriffe, die in harten Kämpfen abgewiesen wurden. Unbedeutende Einbrüche wurden bereinigt oder abgeriegelt.
Südlich des Ladogasees setzte der Feind seine Angriffe, von starker Artillerie, Panzern und Schlachtfliegern unterstützt, fort. Auch diese Angriffe brachen unter hohen blutigen Verlusten für den Feind zusammen.
Die Sowjets verloren wieder 273 Panzer.
Die Luftwaffe, die auch gestern besonders sowjetische Ansammlungen, Artilleriestellungen und Nachschubverbindungen bekämpfte, schoß 65 sowjetische Flugzeuge ab.
An der nordfinnischen Front blieben erneute sowjetische Gegenangriffe im Louhi-Abschnitt ohne Erfolg.
Auf Sizilien kam es zu keinen größeren Kampfhandlungen.
Bei freier Jagd über dem Atlantik wurden ein britischer Bomber und ein Großflugboot abgeschossen.
Feindliche Fliegerkräfte unternahmen gestern einen Tagesangriff auf das südöstliche Reichsgebiet. Durch Abwurf von Spreng- und Brandbomben entstanden in einem Ort Personenverluste und Gebäudeschäden.
dnb. Rom, 14. August –
Der Bericht des italienischen Oberkommandos lautet:
An der Front in Sizilien behindern italienische und deutsche Truppen im Verlauf heftiger Verteidigungskämpfe die Bewegungen des Feindes. Im Westen Siziliens griffen unsere Torpedoflugzeuge einen Dampfer mittlerer Tonnage und einen Torpedobootzerstörer an und beschädigten sie so schwer, daß mit Sicherheit anzunehmen ist, daß sie erfolgreich versenkt wurden; auf der Reede von Syrakus wurden vor Anker liegende feindliche Schiffe mit gutem Erfolg bombardiert.
Bei dem Einflug von Verbänden viermotoriger amerikanischer Flugzeuge auf Rom wurden schwere Schäden verursacht, besonders an Wohnhäusern. Drei viermotorige und zwei zweimotorige Flugzeuge der feindlichen Verbände wurden von unseren Jägern, drei weitere Flugzeuge von der Flak abgeschossen.
Ein Verband mehrmotoriger feindlicher Flugzeuge, die eine Ortschaft in Latium anzugreifen versuchten, verloren bei Luftkämpfen mit italienischen Jägern zwei Flugzeuge.
Von unserer Stockholmer Schriftleitung
dnb. Stockholm, 14. August –
Der Präsident der USA.-Handelskammer, Alex Johnston, der sich zur Zeit in London aufhält, erklärte in einer Rede:
Die Nordamerikaner Werden nicht die ersten sein, die nach dem Kriege abrüsten. Im Gegenteil, die USA. werden eine große Flotte, eine große Luftwaffe und eine vergrößerte Armee aufrechterhalten.
Mr. Johnston unterstrich damit nur, was Marineminister Knox in seinem frechen Programm über den nordamerikanischen „Beitrag zur Weltsicherheit“ ausgeführt hatte. Die angehenden jüdisch-amerikanischen Weltpolizisten und Schacherer haben ihre Rechnung allerdings gemacht, ohne dabei den Widerstandswillen der Völker Europas und Großostasiens zu berücksichtigen.
Einer Meldung aus Washington zufolge gab Roosevelts Sekretär bekannt, daß Paul Porter, der von seinem Posten als Stellvertretender Leiter des Amtes für die Lebensmittelverwaltung zurückgetreten ist, vom Präsidenten zum Stellvertretenden Leiter des Büros für wirtschaftliche Stabilisierung ernannt wurde.
Das Negerproblem in den Vereinigten Staaten hat sich durch die Nachfrage nach Industriearbeitern weiter verschärft.
Nach neuen statistischen Berichten sind von 1930 bis 1940 rund eine Million Neger vom Lande in die Stadt gezogen. 1940 wohnten bereits 40 Prozent der 12,3 Millionen Neger der USA. in 315 Städten. In zwei Dritteln dieser Städte machten sie mindestens 10 Prozent der Gesamtbevölkerung aus. Durch die Hochkonjunktur in der Rüstungsindustrie hat sich diese Bewegung noch verstärkt. Wie die blutigen Vorgänge in Detroit und anderen Industriestädten gezeigt haben, ist das Negerproblem der USA. damit in ein neues ernstes Stadium getreten.