We reached some caves at Sfakia and hid in these caves. Among them were 2100 New Zealanders – the largest number of New Zealand prisoners of war (POWs) taken in a single battle during the Second World War. German losses were very heavy. Buckley, based on British intelligence assumptions of two enemies wounded for every one killed, gave an estimate of 16,800 total casualties. The cost of battle. Evacuated across the Aegean Sea to the island of Crete, they fought again in the Battle of Crete in May 1941. We have 10 biographies, 16 articles, related to The Battle for Crete. There were also 1,828 dead and 183 wounded among the Royal Navy. Although Germany was able to capture the island and secure their oil fields in the East, the amount of casualties and equipment lost in the process was extreme. Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island Read more about this topic:  Battle Of Crete, Operation Geronimo Strike III - See Also -. Casualties. Music = Steve Jablonsky - We Have to GoYoutube Channel Steve Jablonsky = https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkfU7GtZtI4ud3DNq1hJi0g Davin has calculated an estimate of … All they had was a trench in the ground, dug in on the outside, the edge of the camp. In naval operations around Crete the Royal Navy lost three cruisers, six destroyers and the lives of more than 2000 sailors. It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany began an airborne invasion of Crete. The original photo: It was nothing to see a hundred all lined up along the trench, and more waiting to get there. These losses were later to impact negatively German attempts to defend Stalingrad. Other minor omissions are possible. Many men took advantage of the relatively lax security at the transit camp near Galatas and took to the hills. Message 1 - Battle of Crete Posted on: 13 August 2003 by Tom the Pom. Crete would prove to be, as General Kurt Student later commented, the ‘graveyard of the paratroops’. Casualties. Continues on Page 2. Battle for Crete, John Hall Spencer. Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. All non-text content is subject to specific conditions. It was a bloody shambles. … Ministry for Culture and Heritage. There was no food or drink and the Germans robbed us of watches and rings on the march to the POW camp. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta; Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης) was fought during World War II on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code name Unternehmen Merkur (Operation Mercury). Casualties. At least 15 aircraft appeared to have been damaged..."; from 28 May – 1 June, another two aircraft were claimed shot shot down and six more damaged, for a total of 22 claimed destroyed, 11 probably destroyed and 21 damaged, during the entire campaign. The Battle for Crete Total casualties among Commonwealth forces were 15,743, of whom 1751 were killed or died of wounds. Battle of Crete - Casualties. Casualties were shocking on both sides of the Battle of Crete and the German airborne division in particular was decimated. The Battle of Crete took place on the Greek island of Crete. This site is produced by the History Group of the New Zealand Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Photo: Argus Newspaper Collection of Photographs/State Library of Victoria. Photo: Argus Newspaper Collection of Photographs/State Library of Victoria. Poole, H. C. (2009). Crete became a German target following their rapid occupation of the Greek mainland in April 1941. During the battle of Crete Germans used 22,750 soldiers, 1370 airplanes, 70 gliders and 70 ships German casualties mounted quickly. Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island There most of them stayed until they were liberated in 1945. Then one of the officers told us to pile up our weapons and wait for the Germans – we were aghast, and cursed all and sundry. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta, also Unternehmen Merkur, "Operation Mercury", Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης) was fought during the Second World War on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany began an airborne invasion of Crete. In the fighting for Crete, the Allies suffered around 4,000 killed, 1,900 wounded, and 17,000 captured. But British naval commanders believed they had accounted for thousands more when they sunk troop transports bringing men across by sea at the height of the battle. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta; Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης) was a battle during World War II on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur ("Operation Mercury"). One Cretan source puts the number of Cretans killed by German action during the war at 6,593 men, 1,113 women and 869 children. Estimates of the exact losses vary greatly – there were around 4,000 German graves on Crete. Out in the open. Greek and other Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. The Battle of Crete German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta, Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης, also Unternehmen Merkur (Operation Mercury), was fought during World War II on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany began an airborne invasion of Crete. There are four mountain ranges (that almost seem to form a continuous spine along the island) that all come together in the central mass of Mount Ida. From here they were taken north by train. LATEST ARTICLES. The Battle of Crete was fought during the Second World War on the Greek island of Crete. By Pierre Kosmidis. She was later wrecked by demolition charges and abandoned when Crete was evacuated in May. Conditions at the overcrowded camp were poor; food shortages, lack of medical supplies and primitive sanitation added to the depression of the POWs. Wounded and captured on Crete, he escaped from a transit camp in Greece and reached Turkey after sheltering with monks on Mt Athos. The 79th anniversary of the Battle of Crete – Tribute tour of “CCC” Giannis Thimianos-May 20, 2020 0. The Battle of the Somme (1 July - 18 November 1916) was a joint operation between British and French forces intended to achieve a decisive victory over the Germans on the Western Front. He was killed in action in February 1944. New Zealand at War Leading this list is Major General Wilhelm Süssman, commander of the 7th Flieger Division and Group Centre in the assault, who died when his glider detached and crashed in an accident on 20 May whilst en route to Crete. As a result, Germany did not continue their interest in airborne assaults. Total casualties among Commonwealth forces were 15,743, of whom 1751 were killed or died of wounds. Despite this, a breach was made in the defenses set up by the 14th Infantry Brigade, the 2/4th Australian Infantry Battalion and the Greek 3rd, 7th, and Garrison battalions. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta; Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης) was a battle during World War II on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur ("Operation Mercury"). Damage to the aircraft carrier Formidable, battleships Warspite and Barham, destroyers Kelvin and Nubian, and cruisers Ajax, Dido, Orion, and Perth kept these ships out of action for months. Naval History Homepage list during the period of 20 May to 2 June, 4 CAs, 8 DDs, 1 Sloop (Grimsby Class) , 1 Motor launch , 2 LCs and 5 PTs as sunk; total 21 ships sunk. For many in Britain, the resulting battle remains the most painful and infamous episode of the First World War. The following ships all lost men during the battle. It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur (Operation Mercury). Official casualty figures necessarily include estimates, and probably under-estimate the numbers involved. After the war, the Allied graves from the four burial grounds that had been established by the German forces were moved to Suda Bay War Cemetery. Signalman Peter Cosgrave, Divisional Signals, in M. Hutching (ed.) On 20 May 1941 the German attack began, focusing on the airfield at Maleme and the Canea area. The Maori preferred to fight in the manner if their ancestors, and with bare steel they inflicted severe casualties and every evening on the Hun invading parties”. (2014). On the morning of 1 June 1941, the 5000 Allied troops left at Sfakia realised that they had been abandoned. For 12 days, with British, Australian and Greek troops and Cretan Page 3 – The battle: days 1-3. George Weelink in Forty, G 2001 The Battle of Crete, Ian Allen Publishing, Hersham, Surrey. Despite the enduring popularity of these rather fanciful estimates, the United States Army Center of Military History, citing a report of the Historical Branch of the British Cabinet Office, concludes military historians largely accept estimates of between 6,000 and 7,000 German casualties as correct. Everyone had dysentery. It was dusty and dirty and there was only sandy ground, with a few tufts of grass. If you soiled your clothes, all you could do was go down to the beach and get in the tide. Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. Though losing the Battle of Crete, the Allies went on to win the war. Nobody wants to waste vacation time waiting outside an attraction, especially in high temperatures. The Luftwaffe lost more than 350 aircraft. According to Davin, the only German prisoners evacuated to Egypt were 17 captured officers. A valuable reprint of one of the classic accounts of the German invasion of Crete. The Australian Graves Commission counted a combined total of roughly 5,000 German graves in the Maleme-Suda Bay area, at Rethymno and at Heraklion. During the morning of 1 June the exhausted remnants of Creforce formally surrendered to the Germans and began a depressing march back across the mountains. The next day, 24-year-old Wolfgang was killed with his whole platoon, followed by the youngest brother, 17-year-old Hans-Joachim, who was reported killed in action a few days later but whose body was never recovered. Crete is a very contentious battle for many historians and, to an extent, leaders in the past. More than 6000 Germans were killed or wounded. Cretan civillians played a crucial role in the Battle for Crete accounting for a third of German casualties. Official German casualty figures are hard to determine with exactitude due to minor variations between different documents produced by the various German commands on various dates. Officers and non-commissioned officers went to Germany, while the rest ended up in camps in Austria and northern Yugoslavia (modern-day Slovenia). Greek figures are not known, although the German Air Corps recorded taking 5255 Greek prisoners. Official German casualty figures are hard to determine with exactitude due to minor variations between different documents produced by the various German commands on various dates. It highlights the final act of the German - Greek war . Many paratroops died before they could reach the ground, others were mown down after landing as they struggled to release themselves from their parachutes. Of the 7700 New Zealanders involved in the battle, 671 were killed – a fatality rate of nearly 9% – while another 2180 were taken prisoner. Davin has calculated an estimate of 6,698 based upon an examination of various sources. Bewildered and angry, they now faced the prospect of captivity. Because of the occupacion of Crete ( Kriti ) was considered an unrealistic military obsective , no significand defense preparationshad been made of the island . 311 Luftwaffe aircrew were listed as killed or missing, and 127 more were wounded. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta, Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης, also Unternehmen Merkur, Operation Mercury) was fought during World War II on the Greek island of Crete. Crete is … The Germans ultimately prevailed on Crete but at great cost. They were helped, at great personal risk, by the Cretan people. Official casualty figures necessarily include estimates, and probably under-estimate the numbers involved. The Battle of Greece (also known as Operation Marita, German: Unternehmen Marita) is the common name for the invasion of Allied Greece by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany in April 1941 during World War II.The Italian invasion in October 1940, which is usually known as the Greco-Italian War, was followed by the German invasion in April 1941. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PFWqUN1OhzA Obviously the Battle of Crete was not a British victory, and as far as I know, no-one calls it that. The Luftwaffe also lost heavily in the battle; 220 aircraft were destroyed outright and another 64 were written off due to damage, for a total of 284 aircraft lost, with several hundred more damaged to varying degrees. The Germans ultimately prevailed on Crete but at great cost. However, Davin states in regard to the Battle of Crete: Reports of German casualties in British reports are in almost all cases exaggerated and are not accepted against the official contemporary German returns, prepared for normal purposes and not for propaganda. ‘A unique sort of battle’: New Zealanders remember Crete, 2001, p. 199. The Argylls landed on Crete a couple of days before the Germans decided to attack with Para Troopers. Greek figures are not known, although the German Air Corps recorded taking 5255 Greek prisoners. During the battle of Crete Germans used 22,750 soldiers, 1370 airplanes, 70 gliders and 70 ships German casualties mounted quickly. Many villagers were executed for the part they played in the battle and for helping the Allied soldiers left behind after the evacuation. The battle took place at the Crête-à-Pierrot fort (in Haitian Creole Lakrèt-a-Pyewo), east of Saint-Marc on the valley of the Artibonite River.The French colonial army, consisting of 2,000 men led by General Charles Leclerc, blockaded the fort, which was defended by Jean-Jacques Dessalines's Haitian rebels, who included the soldier, Marie-Jeanne Lamartiniére, a woman dressed in men's clothing. Battle of Crete , World War 2 , Maleme 1941 . The first to fall was Count Leberecht von Blücher, who was attempting to resupply his brother, Lieutenant Wolfgang von Blücher, with ammunition when the latter and his platoon were surrounded by members of the Black Watch. Only a few weeks before the invasion, New Zealand officer Major General Bernard Freyberg VC has been appointed commander of the Allied forces on Crete. Battle of Crete: The end of German large scale airborne ops, the casualties and the Pyrrhic victory of the nazis WW2 in Greece. Cretan civillians played a crucial role in the Battle for Crete accounting for a third of German casualties. Their trek over the mountains of Crete had been for nothing. It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur (Operation Mercury). Just a display of German cruelty and Greek courage... watch it to the end,you 'll learn something, and that's a promise. The Battle of Crete was a German victory but a costly one. Private Colin Burn, 18th Battalion, described how the lack of basic facilities at the Galatas camp contributed to an outbreak of disease amongst prisoners: The conditions in the camp were shocking. 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Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. Rain falling on this range irrigates the northern strip of coastal land around Suda Bay and supports the town of Canea. The Battle of Crete took place on the Greek island of Crete. Attacks by German planes, mainly Ju-87 and Ju-88, destroyed three British cruisers (Gloucester, Fiji and Calcutta) and six destroyers (Kelly, Greyhound, Kashmir, Hereward, Imperial and Juno). There were 671 New Zealanders among the dead, and 2180 Kiwi prisoners of war. Second World War The Battle for Crete in May 1941 is the most dramatic battle in which New Zealand forces have participated. Allied PowersOfficial figuresBritish:791 dead268 wounded6,576 capturedAustralian:274 dead507 wounded3,079 capturedNew Zealand:671 dead967 wounded2,180 capturedGreek:Military:426 dead800–850 wounded5,255 capturedCivilian:3,000 deadRoyal Navy:1,828 dead183 wounded9 ships sunk and 18 damagedTotal:23,8303,990 dead2,750 wounded17,090 capturedAxis PowersOfficial German figures:2,124 dead1,917 missing, presumed dead4,041 total dead and missing2,640 wounded17 captur… But British naval commanders believed they had accounted for thousands more when they sunk troop transports … Defensive units were waiting for the Germans, who suffered heavy casualties. On the mainland, the POWs joined those captured in Greece in transit camps at Corinth or Salonika. Defensive units were waiting for the Germans, who suffered heavy casualties. Prominent among the German dead were a trio of brothers, relatives of the Prussian general Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher of Waterloo fame. Others were not content to sit out the war in captivity. Also prominent on this list is Major General Eugen Meindl, commander of Luftlande Sturmregiment and Group West in the assault, who was shot in the chest on 20 May and evacuated the following morning. Many Cretans were shot by the Germans in reprisals, both during the battle and in the occupation that followed. A few made it to neutral Turkey via Greece or went directly to Egypt. A large number of civilians were killed in the crossfire or died fighting as partisans. Maori troops line up on the quayside at Alexandria in Egypt following their evacuation from Crete. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta; Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης) was a battle during World War II on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur ("Operation Mercury"). Page 7. The Battle of Crete German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta, Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης, also Unternehmen Merkur (Operation Mercury), was fought during World War II on the Greek island of Crete.It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Nazi Germany began an airborne invasion of Crete. German losses totaled 4,041 dead/missing, 2,640 wounded, 17 captured, and 370 aircraft destroyed. During the last week of April more than 50,000 Allied troops … About 23000 Allied casualties (1500 dead and 21500 POW) – About 5000 Dead German troops – The end of the paratroopers’ days. While at anchor in Suda Bay, northern Crete, heavy cruiser HMS York (90) had been badly damaged by Italian explosive motor boats and beached on 26 March 1941. More than 50 British and Australian warships were caught up in the maelstrom of Crete. Greek forces and other Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. Battle of Crete summary. On 20 May 1941 the German attack began, focusing on the airfield at Maleme and the Canea area. The Battle of Crete was the first occasion where Fallschirmjäger (German paratroops) were used en masse, the first mainly airborne invasion in military history, the first time the Allies made significant use of intelligence from decrypted German messages from the Enigma machine, and the first time German troops encountered mass resistance from a civilian population. The Battle for Crete, updated 5-Aug-2014. The campaign also cost the Royal Navy 9 ships sunk and 18 damaged. More than 3000 died during the battle and a similar number were wounded. Estimates of the exact losses vary greatly – there were around 4,000 German graves on Crete. Greek forces and other Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. More than 3000 died during the battle and a similar number we… The Battle of Crete is considered one of the most sensational events os t he Second World War ( in 1941 ) .. The cost of the Battle for Crete was high for both sides. ‘A unique sort of battle’: New Zealanders remember Crete, 2001, p. 202. Commercial re-use may be allowed on request. The British Royal Navy was able to evacuate 16,000 troops to Egypt, but had to leave many others behind, including 9000 Australian and New Zealand troops, and thousands of Greek soldiers. The Luftwaffe lost more than 350 aircraft. Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island. Meet the NZHistory.net.nz team. The Allies lost 3,500 soldiers: 1,742 dead, with an equal number wounded, as well as 12,254 Commonwealth and 5,255 Greek captured. To the southwest is the Sphakia (White) mountain range, which literally falls into the sea at certain points and make access to the area very difficult. Despite this, a breach was made in the defenses set up by the 14th Infantry Brigade, the 2/4th Australian Infantry Battalion and the Greek 3rd, 7th, and Garrison battalions. They were never again used in a large-scale airborne offensive. During the battle of Crete the Maoris were well known to be deadly with bayonet and were one of the best hand-to-hand fighters amount the soldering in the battle. The Battle of Crete (German: Luftlandeschlacht um Kreta, also Unternehmen Merkur, 'Operation Mercury,' Greek: Μάχη της Κρήτης) was fought during the Second World War on the Greek island of Crete. Some soldiers roamed Crete for several years trying to find a way off the island. By 1 June the effective Mediterranean strength of the Royal Navy had been reduced to two battleships and three cruisers to oppose the four battleships and eleven cruisers of the Italian Navy. Other escapees became involved in the guerilla war waged by Cretan resistance groups against the German–Italian occupation force. Royal Navy shipborne AA claims for the period of 15–27 May amounted to: "Twenty enemy aircraft...shot down for certain, with 11 probables. 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