The 36th Brigade Group from the British 78th Infantry Division stood by in floating reserve. "The Stamford Historical Society Presents: Operation Torch and the Invasion of North Africa", "Frederick Thornton Peters - the Canadian Virtual War Memorial - Veterans Affairs Canada", "Remembering Operation Torch on its 75th anniversary", United States Army Center of Military History, "Chapter 7: The Decision to Invade North Africa (Torch)", The Decision to Invade North Africa (TORCH), US Army Campaigns of World War II Series/Algeria-French Morocco, History and photos of the operations of the USS Ranger and its Air Group during Operation Torch, (North African Jewish Resistance to Nazis and the Holocaust), The accord Franco-Américan of Messelmoun (in French), Report of the Commander-in-Chief Allied Forces to the Combined Chief of Staff on Operations in North Africa, Operation Torch: Allied Invasion of North Africa, Operation TORCH Motion Pictures from the National Archives, Provisional Government of the French Republic, Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany, Rape during the Soviet occupation of Poland, Commander, Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force, Military Governor, U.S. In the hours prior to the landings, resistance teams under Henri d'Astier de la Vigerie and José Aboulker attempted a coup against General Alphonse Juin. The Center Task Force, aimed at Oran, included the U.S. 2nd Battalion, 509th Parachute Infantry Regiment, the U.S. 1st Infantry Division, and the U.S. 1st Armored Division—a total of 18,500 troops. An assessment of the sympathies of the French forces in North Africa was essential, and plans were made to secure their cooperation, rather than resistance. Crusade in Europe, pp. [37], The operation was America's first armed deployment in the Arab world since the Barbary Wars and, according to The Economist, laid the foundations for America's postwar Middle East policy. In North Africa, the French Armée d’Afrique joined with the Allies as did several French warships. Wiki User Answered . Fredendall was sacked and replaced by George Patton. The French Resistance had unsuccessfully attempted a coup in Algiers and, even though this raised alertness in the Vichy forces, the Eastern Task Force met less opposition and were able to push inland and compel surrender on the first day. Casualties were held to a minimum—about 500 Allied soldiers were killed, another 700 were injured. Operation Torch was an invasion strategy by Allied forces into North Africa that took place Nov. 8 to 10, 1942, during World War II (1939 to 1945). An attempt was made to land U.S. infantry at the harbour directly, in order to quickly prevent destruction of the port facilities and scuttling of ships. At Safi, the objective being capturing the port facilities to land the Western Task Force's medium tanks, the landings were mostly successful. Fighting through the spring, the Allies finally drove the Axis from North Africa in May 1943. https://www.thoughtco.com/world-war-ii-operation-torch-2361497 (accessed January 25, 2021). The Invasion was the largest anphib assualt in History. This Western Task Force consisted of the U.S. 3rd and 9th Infantry Divisions, and two battalions from the U.S. 2nd Armored Division — 35,000 troops in a convoy of over 100 ships. A WWI-era destroyer, the Dallas was stripped of much of her structure to make her light, giving her a shallow draft. It was a deceptive name, designed to make it seem that America had more paratroopers than it did. 39,000 officers and enlisted, Major General Charles W. Ryder, USA (CG, 34th Infantry Division, USA) Casablanca was the principal French Atlantic naval base after German occupation of the European coast. Nineteen months before the D-day invasion of Normandy, Allied assault forces landed in North Africa in Operation TORCH, the first major amphibious operation of the war in Europe. Approx. Anderson nearly succeeded in taking Tunis but was pushed back by determined enemy counterattacks. World War II: Operation Torch. The French had suffered many casualties and lacking artillery and armour, Barré was forced to withdraw.[36]. American General Dwight D. Eisenhower, supreme commander of the Allied forces in the European Theater, planned a three-pronged attack on Casablanca (Western), Oran (Center) and Algiers (Eastern), then a rapid move on Tunis. Top Answer. WikiMatrix WikiMatrix. The combined operation in North Africa was dubbed Operation Torch, and it was agreed that the supreme command of the invasion should be given to an American. [24] The landings were begun without covering fire, in the hope that the French would not resist at all. Due to navigational and endurance issues, the drop was scattered and the bulk of the aircraft forced to land in the desert. Wracked with indecision, Barré moved his troops into the hills and formed a defensive line from Teboursouk through Medjez el Bab and ordered that anyone trying to pass through the line would be shot. I sommergibili dell'Asse e l'Operazione Torch. Allied Forces Dwight Eisenhower (Supreme Allied Commander) Arthur Tedder (Deputy Supreme Allied Commander) Bernard Montgomery (Ground Forces Commander in Chief) Trafford Leigh-Mallory (Air Commander in Chief) Bertram Ramsay (Naval Commander in Chief) German Forces Gerd von Rundstedt (Oberbefehlshaber West) Erwin Rommel (Heeresgruppe B) The success of Torch caused Admiral François Darlan, commander of the Vichy French forces to order co-operation with the Allies, in return for being retained as High Commissioner, with many other Vichy officials keeping their jobs. Ideally there would also be a landing at Tunis to secure Tunisia and facilitate the rapid interdiction of supplies traveling via Tripoli to Rommel's forces in Libya. The operation called for three main landings to take place across North Africa. During the time of Operation Torch the French Air Force had some 500 aircraft based on five airfields in Morocco, all within easy range of Casablanca, and various other fields in Algeri… Who was involved in operation torch? On the night of Nov. 7, pro-Allies General Antoine Béthouart attempted a coup d'etat in Casablanca against the regime of General Charles Noguès. 2nd Battalion, 509th Parachute Infantry Regiment, until disabled by the 16-inch calibre American naval gunfire, OPÉRATION TORCH Les débarquements alliés en Afrique du Nord. Conversely, there was concern about French resentment over the British attack on Mers el Kebir in 1940, which had inflicted heavy damage on French naval forces. A Western Task Force (aimed at Casablanca) was composed of American units, with Major General George S. Patton in command and Rear Admiral Henry Kent Hewitt heading the naval operations. The deal was made on 10 November, and French resistance ceased almost at once. The U.S. 1st Ranger Battalion landed east of Oran and quickly captured the shore battery at Arzew. Endeavoring to accomplish his objectives, Murphy provided evidence suggesting the French would not resist and made contact with several officers, including the commander-in-chief of Algiers, General Charles Mast. Aerial operations were split into two, east of Cape Tenez in Algeria, with British aircraft under Air Marshal Sir William Welsh and west of Cape Tenez, all American aircraft under Major General Jimmy Doolittle, under the direct command of Major General Patton. The naval strength of the Axis in the Mediterranean would have been greatly increased if the Germans had succeeded in seizing the French ships, but every important ship was scuttled at dock by the French Navy before the Germans could take them. [34] Men from French North Africa would see much combat under the Allied banner as part of the French Expeditionary Corps (consisting of 112,000 troops in April 1944) in the Italian campaign, where Maghrebis (mostly Moroccans) made up over 60% of the unit's soldiers.[35]. On all fronts, the French were eventually overcome and American forces tightened their grip on Casablanca. While that was of minimal military effect, it committed the French to the Allied side. figure it out yourself. [25] The US troops pushed quickly inland and General Juin surrendered the city to the Allies at 18:00. Operation Torch cost the Allies around 480 killed and 720 wounded. This was meant as a preventative action to keep the U.S out of WW2, but ended up doing the opposite. A total of 67 American troops were interned by Franco's forces until February 1943. Operation Flagpole was part of the run-up to Operation Torch, the planned Allied invasion of North Africa during World War II. The limited French troops in Tunisia did not resist German troops arriving by air; Admiral Esteva, the commander, obeyed orders to that effect from Vichy. [15] In Eisenhower's acceptance of landings in Algeria and Morocco, he pointed out that the decision removed the early capture of Tunis from the probable to only the remotely possible because of the extra time it would afford the Axis to move forces into Tunisia.[16]. The French troops in North Africa who were not already captured submitted to and eventually joined the Allied forces. (Bonnier de La Chapelle was arrested on the spot and executed two days later.). On 9 November, Axis forces started to build up in French Tunisia, unopposed by the local French forces under General Barré. With much of North Africa already under Allied control, this would allow the Allies to carry out a pincer operation against Axis forces in North Africa. 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