Saturday, September 6, 2008

[Image] An Incredible Escape Vol. 2

August, 1941. Tobruk, Libya.

A 1,000 pound dud.

These four men of the 9th Division owe their lives to the Czechoslovakian resistance, many members of whom secretly work in Nazi Munitions plants in their occupied country against their will.

This 1,000 pound bomb (453.5 kilograms) contained huge amounts of high explosives but without their detonators they were inert weights. This particular bomb landed 20 feet from the anti-aircraft gun manned by the above Diggers. Amazed to still be alive the men inspected the dud after the attack and found in labeled "Made in Czechoslovakia" in non official markings.

This was not the only dud from Czechoslovakia to arrive at Tobruk during the siege. One memorable one, another 1,000 pounder landed in the town square and failed to detonate. When Engineers arrived to disarm it so it could be removed an examination of where the detonator should have been found a crumpled piece of paper with a handwritten note saying simply;

"From your friends in Czechoslovakia. I am sorry but this is all we can do to help right now".

image 009520 Australian War Memorial.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

great story