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Irish Brigade

The story of the 38th (Irish) Brigade in the Second World War

Faugh a Ballagh        Nec Aspera Terrent         Quis Separabit


War Diaries – 10th April 1943

Brigade HQ – BEJA.

0830 Brigade Commander left CP to establish Command OP 4244.

0900 1 RIrF began to move forward.

1020 Division reported NIH tanks had no found no opposition and suggested infantry move forward (this already been done).

1045 Division reported sending squadron 56 Recce to come under command NIH 4747.

1 RIrF captured at 4345 2 PoWs of Pion Btl 334, who appeared to be stragglers from the retreat. All the way up past Si Ameur, many slit trenches were seen, and there was a large store of clothing and equipment at pt 402 (4347).

1055 1 RIrF had reached end of Mahdi 4346.

1100 Forward troops at 43046.

1215 LO arrived from Division confirming W/T orders.

1245 “Things going well and pretty quickly 440479.”

1350 RE ordered to continue work on Mahdi track.

1420 Attack with artillery support on Guerinat.

1515 1 RIrF on objective unopposed.

1530 6 Innisks called forward to Si Ameur.

1730 Consolidation completed.

1830 Command Post moved to 420445.

1930 Brigade HQ moved to location Farm 386392.

Brigade A Echelon moved to 3734. Captain AA Dean, Royal Signals was attached this HQ from 78 Division Signals.

2100 Brigade Major attended conference at Division. 6 Innisks and 1 RIrF were to come back from Djebel Guerinat, whether relieved or not, and 2 Hamps were under command 12 Brigade. 10 Brigade were to make for Si Nsir and 1 RIrF to send coy off to cut off enemy.


1 RIrF – MAHDI.

Bttn advanced to Djebel Ou Guerinat 4256.

0930 CO gives out his orders.

1200 First phase of advance carried out without incident. Bttn HQ at pt 402 4347.

1255 Tanks report that they are being mortared from 4548.

1315 CO orders for continuation of advance. Enemy tanks reported 406583.

1330 B Coy lead off on second phase.

1507 Objective reached and consolidated. No opposition except a little mortaring on arrival at the objective.

1630 Command Group and later Bttn’s HQ take up position 425497.

Fusilier Fred Nash, Royal Irish Fusiliers.


6 Innisks – PLATEAU FARM.

0030 CO attends conference at Brigade.

0730 CO sends back for R Group to meet him on Mahdi on 0900hrs. Owing to a misunderstanding, O Group consisting of Coy Commanders, Adjutant and Intelligence Section met the CO, who takes them forward to the OP and view ground in front and points out features. Rough plan is for 1 RIrF to work forward and if held up we are to go through them. The features to be swept are ‘Gouning’ 4250 and 4349, ‘Diaman’ 4151, Tekla 4051.

0845 Bttn moves off from Plateau by march route and arrives at assembly area J 423449 at abut 1200hrs.

1505 CO is called to conference at Brigade and Bttn is ordered forward to hold Gouning with RIrF over night.

1700 RIrF had met no opposition but B Coy found 18 enemy on the forward slopes of Mahdi waiting to give themselves up. They were 3/755 Infantry Regiment stated their officers had left three days before.

1900 By 1900hrs, Bttn reached J4248, where it was met by the RIrF, who said there was no room on Gouning for two Bttns and it was decided to stay in area J 4248 overnight as no enemy could be found. Bttn takes up defensive positions and sends out early warning patrols.


 

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