BLOODBATH ON THE BEACH
The operation was a complete disaster. On the beaches, the Germans’ powerful machine guns and artillery showered rounds on the ships, which struggled to land their men safely on the beach. The machine guns were the most deadly and mowed down all soldiers in the first wave. The Allies failed to reach almost every goal on every beach while suffering immense losses. Although the raid was lost in advance, a communication breakdown meant that Major General John Hamilton Roberts sent in the FMR as reinforcements. This action only compounded the failure and increased the losses.
Many tanks could not manoeuvre over the beach terrain and became immobilized. Soldiers in the tanks tried to shoot at the German positions, but their attempts were in vain. Most tanks simply became improvised shields for the soldiers trapped on the beach.
Some soldiers managed to get off the beaches and capture German positions. On the White and Red beaches, some of the infantry secured the casino and made it a rally point. At Green Beach, Company B of the South Saskatchewan Regiment was able to briefly capture Pourville. However, the Allies struggled to hold their positions under the ferocious German response. The surrender orders were given after an hours-long bloodbath, and the men tried desperately to get back to the landing craft.
Nothing went as planned during the raid. From one end of the beach to the other, men from all regiments were slaughtered before even getting a chance to fight back at the powerful German defence. The hoped-for aerial and naval support was sorely insufficient, and the men were largely left on their own to face the enemy fire.