July 1944 (2)

Soldiers near Aitape, New Guinea, July 1944

Soldiers near Aitape, New Guinea, July 1944

1o-11 July – on the night of 10th/11th July the trapped Japanese 18th Army attempted to break through US lines.  In what became known as the Battle of Driniumor River they attacked in a solid mass of around 10,000 men in a suicidal frontal assault. This was an attempt to ensure that some men would successfully break through – which they did – but it was achieved at appalling cost.

The Japanese were now aware of how strongly defended the US positions were. US machine gunners cut down hundreds of the Japanese, with some reports of so many bodies piled up in front of US positions that that they blocked the field of fire and men had to go forward to clear them away.    MGeneral H. W. Blakeley recorded:

 

“Shortly before midnight, after a short artillery preparation, which came as a surprise because no enemy artillery had been identified within range of the Driniumor, [10,000] enemy infantry in screaming waves began charging across the river against Companies E and G 128TH Infantry, in the south part of the sector of the 2D Battalion, 128TH Infantry

“The attack in the Company G sector was stopped, but another attack which hit Company E shortly after the first assault was more successful largely because of the physical impossibility of holding a position in the dark against an attacking force believed to have a ten to one superiority over the defenders. By dawn the Japanese held a good-sized area of wooded high ground to the left rear of Company G.”

 

11 July – Franklin Roosevelt announced his intention to run for an unprecedented fourth term in office as President of the United States.

On New Guinea, the Babo airfield was hit along with supply dumps at Kokas.  Manowari, Waren and Moemi were also bombed.  Halmahera Island received destruction of various enemy installations.

Aitape area

Aitape area

13-14 July – the land/sea war in and around New Guinea continued as warships bombarded Aitape to support the Australian and US troops advancing up the northern coastline.  Heavy fighting and a Japanese attack, under Gen. Adachi, at the Wewak River had slowed their progress.  The Allied troops launched a double enveloping counteroffensive that divided Adachi’s men into two groups, which soon rendered them useless.  Nevertheless, combat would continue for 4 more weeks.

 

In the CBI arena, the 10th Air Force was bombing and strafing the Myitkyina area to support their ground troops, while bridges were bombed at five other areas.  The 14th Air Force in China caused massive damaged at the Pailochi and 2 other air fields along with compounds, river shipping, troop concentrations and railroad yards.

Click on images to enlarge.

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Military Humor – 

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Farewell Salutes – 

Martin Alexander – Columbia, FL; US Air Force, WWII, Korea & Vietnam, (Ret.) pilot

Arthur Brown Jr. – Spokane, WA; US Navy, WWIItributesarmy

Ray Cochran – Melbourne, FL; US Army Air Corps, WWII, PTO, 11th Airborne Division

Arturo Franco – Dallas, OR; US Army, Kosovo & Afghanistan, 82nd Airborne Division

Leon Glowicki – Bay City, MI; US Army, Korea, 7th Division, Engineers

Theodore Larson – Chicago, IL; US Navy, WWII

John McGinn – Portsmouth, NH; US Army, HQ Co/88th Infantry Division

George Roberts – Birkenhead, ENG; Fleet Air Arm, WWII

Albert G. Smith – AUS; RA Army, WWII, PTO, Z Force

George Thompson – Albury, AUS; RA Air Force, WWII, B-24 co-pilot

Peter Vukovich Sr. – Hammond, IN; US Navy, WWII, ETO

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About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on December 5, 2016, in WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 61 Comments.

  1. Some of the figure that are mentioned in various conflicts throughout the war are unbelievable to comprehend, I was just visualizing an enemy assault of 10,000, what a formidable force to face in one onslaught, wars have certainly changed gp, no more do we see figures like that, modern warfare is programmed and dispatched out of computers.
    Cheers mate.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Interesting post especially the numbers! I was very taken with the Rough neighborhood image.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The numbers do remain astounding. Due to us having a number of younger viewers I have refrained from including any images that show the results.
      That ‘rough neighborhood’ got me too, Hilary, glad you liked it.

      Like

  3. Such a hard and bad story with a lot of victims but I don’t think people has learn a lesson on this

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for writing a great blog

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a lot of destruction and so many victims. Wish there was another way to settle differences.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve never been able to stomach the Japanese complete disregard for human life. It’s completely alien to everything I’m familiar with.

    Like

  7. One of the paintings in our book on the 312th Bomb Group shows a raid on Babo. It can be found here: http://irandpcorp.com/products/mission-to-babo/

    The first thing that comes to mind when you mention Kokas is the “Death of an A-20” sequence from July 22, 1944.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I just recently read Flags of Our Fathers & now i can’t wait to be on Christmas break so I can watch the movie. Plus band of brothers and the Pacific! I have never seen them before. There was/is so much about history that I dont know

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Such a sad story and one that I haven’t heard before, Those numbers are so staggering.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. This is another interesting real fact of history. I’ve never heard of this battle and to think so many good men lost their lives and we didn’t know. Sad, indeed. Thank you for giving them a voice.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Your military humor caught me this time, G. The UNinvolved in Africa struck a chord as I thought about the 1985-2000 Civil War in Liberia and how a little more involvement by either the UN or America might have reduced or eliminated so much tragedy. –Curt

    Liked by 1 person

  12. War is always terrible but I think it’s really sad when the fighting goes on even when the losing part has given up.

    Like

  13. I do understand that death is part of war, but this puts it to the extreme. At what point is it not worth it? I can’t answer that.

    Love the (UN)Involved photo

    Liked by 1 person

    • So true, Linda. The Charge was heartbreaking to read, one could never truly imagine what it was like to be there. I’m very glad so many people are noticing the Wreaths link!!

      Like

  14. Seems like a Pyrrhic victory for the Japanese. How could they hold the high ground they took, with such depleted forces? I suppose we’ll find out what happened to them in a future post.

    Like

  15. GP, your article is very interesting, albeit horrifying, what with the mental image of human walls.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. The Japanese officers may have committed suicide after defeats, but they had no right to force their men to die so needlessly in pointless frontal assaults.
    By contrast, the amusing photos lightened the mood.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was part of their culture, to save the face of their families and to never be seen in defeat, but you will notice as the inevitable end to the war becomes more and more clear to them, more of the men prefer to surrender.

      Like

  17. Have also taken note of the link for the wreaths, which I didn’t know about before. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. So hard to read this. Thanks for highlighting. I just hope that people will read your posts and learn a lesson. It’s very sad to read about.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. That’s hard.So much dead men to ensure that some men would successfully break through

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Reading your posts at times makes me go cold I realize, the sacrifices. You write so well, I see in my mind all you write, the bodies in the water, terrible just so terrible. I saw yesterday via one of your news stations about the Christmas Wreaths to Soldiers buried at Arlington, I was so touched and how a charity set up was asking for people to donate, why aren’t the Government paying for this. Just like here, the Veterans are not remembered or helped as they should. Do you know the name of the Charity for the Wreaths and any details, I would appreciate it.

    I look forward, if that is not the wrong thing to say, your Posts they inform me about so much and I find them terribly moving.

    Liked by 3 people

  21. Thank you for your sad report about the Battle of Driniumor river, of which I had never hear.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. It’s so sad to think about the needless deaths in those frontal attacks.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Hard to contemplate those sorts of numbers. 10,000 is bigger than many towns in New Zealand.

    Liked by 1 person

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