Febone 1960.net Blog

To Know There Is To Go There

Cheese In A Mouse

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CARUD (PRONOUNCED CORD) BAILEY SERVED IN THE 366TH INFANTRY BRIGADE WITH LT. JOHN FOX, AN ARTILLERY FORWARD OBSERVER. THE YOUNG FIRST SARGEANT WAS SOON TO GET A LESSON IN THE FIGHTING SPIRIT OF THE BLACK SOLDIER. WHEN ENEMY TROOPS SURROUNDED FOX’S POSITION INSIDE A HOUSE AND WERE ABOUT TO OVERRUN HIM, HE ORDERED ARTILLERY FIRE DIRECTLY ON HIS OWN POSITION, SACRIFICING HIS LIFE. FOX’S HEROIC ACTIONS ON DECEMBER 26, 1944 BOUGHT VALUABLE TIME THAT HELP SAVE OTHER TROOPS.

THE NEXT MAJOR BATTLE FOR FIRST SGT CARUD BAILEY AND THE 366TH DIVISION OF THE 92ND INFANTRY WOULD OCCUR IN FEBRUARY 1945.

THE FIFTH ARMY POSTPONED ITS MAJOR OFFENSIVE UNTIL APRIL DUE TO WEATHER CONDITIONS, BUT GENERAL ALMOND DECIDED THAT HIS DIVISION WOULD LAUNCH ITS OWN ATTACK IN FEBRUARY. ALMOND DEVISED HIS OPERATION NOT AS A BREAKTHROUGH ASSAULT BUT AS A DIVISIONAL STRENGTH “FEELER MOVEMENT,” INTENDED TO DETERMINE ENEMY STRENGTH AND DEPLOYMENT, DRAW MORE ENEMY TROOPS TO THE AREA AND ENHANCE THE DIVISION’S OWN POSITION.

TROOPS IN THE SERCHIO VALLEY WERE TO SEIZE THE LAMA DI SOTTO BRIDGE, OVERLOOKING THE GERMAN SUPPLY CENTER. THEY WERE TO CREATE A DIVERSION WHILE THE MAIN ASSAULT CONCENTRATED ON THE COASTAL SECTOR. ALMOND HOPED TO REACH THE STRETTOIA HILL MASS ON THE COAST, JUST NORTH OF THE CINQUALE CANAL, AND THEN TAKE MASSA. ONCE IN MASSA, AMERICAN ARTILLERY WOULD COME WITHIN FIRING RANGE OF THE ENEMY’S NAVAL BASE.

UNITS WERE MOVED AROUND SO THAT THE 370TH AND 371ST OCCUPIED THE COASTAL SECTOR WHILE THE 365TH INFANTRY WENT TO THE SERCHIO VALLEY. BAILEY’S UNIT, THE 366TH WAS DIVIDED BETWEEN BOTH AREAS.

ON FEBRUARY 4, THE 366TH HELD GALLICANO, AND THE NEXT DAY IT PUSHED ITS LINES INTO THE OUTLYING VILLAGES. THE 365TH, TO THE EAST OF THE SERCHI RIVER, TOOK THE TOWN OF LAMA, JUST NORTH OF SOMMOCOLONIA, AND OCCUPIED MOUNT DELLA STELLA AT THE FOOT OF THE LAMA DI SOTTO RIDGE. THE 365TH HELD OUT AGAINST NUMEROUS COUNTERATTACKS UNTIL FEBRUARY 8, WHEN A FULL BATTALION OF GERMANS PUSHED THE AMERICANS OFF THE HILL AND OUT OF LAMA. AT NIGHTFALL, ON FEBRUARY 10TH, AFTER ENCOUNTERING GRUELING ARTILLERY FIRE AND GRENADIER ATTACKS, THE BUFFALO SOLDIERS OF THE 366TH RETOOK LAMA.

THE BUFFALO SOLDIERS ON THE COAST WERE HIT JUST AS HARD AS THEIR COMRADES IN THE VALLEY. THE GERMANS HAD TANKS, FIELD ARTILLERY, AND THOUSANDS OF GROUND TROOPS TO PROTECT LASPEZIA AND THEY COULD CALL ON HEAVY COASTAL GUNS, WHICH WERE UNAVAILABLE TO THE AMERICANS. FIRE FROM THE POWERFUL COASTAL GUNS LEFT CRATERS SO LARGE THAT THE ALLIED TANKS LITERALLY FELL INTO THEM.

THE REMAINDER OF THE 366TH AND ITS SUPPORTING ARMOR–INCLUDING ANOTHER BLACK UNIT, THE 748TH TANK BATTALION–ADVANCED ALONG THE COAST. RIDING ON THE TANKS, THE 366TH ROLLED INTO THE SEA TO AVOID MINES, THAN CAME BACK ONTO DRY LAND. THE FIRST TWO TANKS TO HIT THE BEACH WERE KNOCKED OUT BY MINES AND BLOCKED THE WAY. BEFORE LONG MINES DESTROYED FOUR MORE TANKS. THE FOUL WEATHER, WHICH PROMPTED THE FIFTH ARMY TO DELAY ITS ATTACK UNTIL APRIL, MEANT NO AIR SUPPORT FOR THE BUFFALO SOLDIERS. ARTILLERY FIRE PREVENTED ENGINEERS FROM LAYING A BRIDGE. THREE TANKS WERE LOST WHEN THEY FELL INTO UNDERWATER CRATERS WHILE CROSSING THE CANAL.

DESPITE NUMEROUS COUNTERATTACKS, THE BUFFALO SOLDIERS ESTABLISHED A LINE OF DEFENSE NORTH OF THE CANAL. WITHOUT A BRIDGE, THEY HAD TO HAND-CARRY SUPPLIES ACROSS THE WATER. CASUALTIES WERE MOUNTING, AND THE COASTAL GUNS KEPT POUNDING AWAY. ON THE NIGHT OF FEBRUARY 10TH, ALMOND CALLED OFF THE ATTACK AND ORDERED HIS TROOPS BACK ACROSS THE CANAL. THE FEBRUARY OPERATION COST 22 TANKS AND MORE THAN 1,100 CASUALTIES, INCLUDING 56 OFFICERS. FIRST SGT. CARUD BAILEY WAS ONE OF THOSE CASUALTIES. HE HAD GIVEN HIS LIFE FOR THE DOUBLE VICTORY.

THE BUFFALO SOLDIERS DID IN FACT BREAK THROUGH THE GOTHIC LINE. THEY REACHED THEIR OBJECTIVE, CAPTURED OR HELPED CAPTURE NEARLY 24,000 PRISONERS AND RECEIVED MORE THAN 12,000 DECORATIONS AND CITATIONS FOR THEIR GALLANTRY IN COMBAT, INCLUDING A POSTHUMOUS DISTINGUISHED CROSS FOR LT. JOHN FOX. THE SOLDIERS OF THE 92ND INFANTRY DIVISION HAD PROVEN THEIR WORTH THROUGH MONTHS OF BITTER COMBAT IN THE ITALIAN CAMPAIGN.

I’M Colonel Butch Murphy, U.S. Army-Retired, AND THANK YOU FOR JOINING US ON THE MILITARY SEGMENT OF THE FEBONE1960.NET BLACK HISTORY MONTH CALENDAR. JOIN US TOMORROW AS WE FACE A SHOWDOWN WITH JIM CROW.

For Spanish and hearing impaired versions, please go to the Febone1960.net Black History Month Calendar

FEBONE1960.NET IS EXPERIENCING TECHNICAL PROBLEMS WITH THE HEARING IMPAIRED AND SPANISH VIDEOS. TO COVER THOSE AREAS WE HAVE PLACED THE WRITTEN TEXT ON THE BLOG IN ENGLISH AND SPANISH. WE WILL WORK TO GET THE VIDEOS BACK ON TRACK AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. WE APOLOGIZE FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE.
El Carud había servido con el Teniente John Fox. John Fox era el observador avanzado de una Artillería para la 366 Infantería. Él ejemplificó el espíritu impresionante del soldado negro. Cuando las tropas enemigas rodearon la posición del Teniente dentro de una casa y estuvieron a punto de invadirlo, él pidió el fuego de artillería directamente en su propia posición, sacrificando su vida. Las acciones heroicas del zorro compraron el tiempo valioso que la ayuda salva otras tropas. Heroics del zorro ocurrió el 26 de diciembre de 1944.
LA SIGUIENTE BATALLA PRINCIPAL POR PRIMER SGT CARUD BAILEY y la 366 DIVISIÓN de la 92 INFANTERÍA OCURRIRÍA EN EL FEBRERO DE 1945
EL QUINTO EJÉRCITO POSPUSO LA OFENSIVA PRINCIPAL HASTA ABRIL DEBIDO A CONDICIONES METEOROLÓGICAS. LA ALMENDRA GENERAL DECIDIÓ QUE SU DIVISIÓN LANZARÍA UN ATAQUE EN FEBRERO.
LA ALMENDRA GENERAL DECIDIÓ PROBAR FUERZA ENEMIGA Y DESPLIEGUE, DIBUJAR MÁS TROPAS ENEMIGAS AL ÁREA Y REALZAR LA PROPIA POSICIÓN DE LA DIVISIÓN.
LAS TROPAS EN EL VALLE SERCHIO DEBÍAN CAPTURAR EL PUENTE, CERCA DEL DEPÓSITO DE SUMINISTRO ALEMÁN. ELLOS DEBÍAN CREAR UNA DESVIACIÓN MIENTRAS EL ASALTO PRINCIPAL SE CONCENTRÓ EN EL SECTOR COSTERO. LA ALMENDRA ESPERÓ ALCANZAR LA MASA DE COLINA STRETTOIA EN LA COSTA, SÓLO AL NORTE DEL CANAL CINQUALE, Y LUEGO TOMAR MASSA. UNA VEZ EN MASSA, LA ARTILLERÍA AMERICANA VENDRÍA DENTRO DEL CAMPO DE TIRO DE LA BASE NAVAL DEL ENEMIGO.
Las 370 y 371 UNIDADES OCUPARON EL SECTOR COSTERO MIENTRAS la 365 INFANTERÍA FUE AL VALLE SERCHIO. LA UNIDAD DEL BAILEY, el 366 FUE DIVIDIDO ENTRE AMBAS ÁREAS.
El 4 de FEBRERO, la 366 UNIDAD CAPTURÓ el GALLICANO, y al día siguiente EMPUJÓ EN LOS MUNICIPIOS PERIFÉRICOS. El 365, al ESTE DEL RÍO SERCHI, TOMÓ UNA CIUDAD SÓLO AL NORTE de SOMMOCOLONIA, y OCUPÓ EL PIE DE LA COLINA. El 365 RESISTIÓ A NUMEROSOS CONTRAATAQUES HASTA EL 8 DE FEBRERO, CUANDO UN BATALLÓN LLENO DE ALEMANES EMPUJÓ A LOS AMERICANOS ATRÁS. EN EL ANOCHECER, EL 10 DE FEBRERO, DESPUÉS DE ENCONTRAR FUEGO DE ARTILLERÍA PENOSO Y ATAQUES DE GRANADERO, LOS SOLDADOS DE BÚFALO del 366 VOLVIERON A TOMAR LA CIUDAD.
LOS SOLDADOS DE BÚFALO EN LA COSTA FUERON GOLPEADOS TAN CON FUERZA COMO SUS COMPAÑEROS EN EL VALLE. LOS ALEMANES TENÍAN TANQUES, ARTILLERÍA, Y MILES DE TROPAS PARA PROTEGER LASPEZIA Y ELLOS TAMBIÉN USARON UN ARMA COSTERA PESADA, QUE ERAN NO DISPONIBLES A LOS AMERICANOS. EL FUEGO DEL ARMA PODEROSA DEJÓ CRÁTERES TAN GRANDES QUE LOS TANQUES ALIADOS LITERALMENTE SE CAYERON EN ELLOS.
El RESTO del 366 y OTRA UNIDAD NEGRA, el 748 TANQUE AVANZADO POR BATALLÓN A LO LARGO DE LA COSTA. LOS TANQUES QUE LLEVAN el 366 VIAJARON EN EL MAR PARA EVITAR MINAS. LOS DOS PRIMEROS TANQUES PARA GOLPEAR LA PLAYA ERAN STRUCKED CON MINAS Y BLOQUEARON EL CAMINO. DENTRO DE POCO LAS MINAS DESTRUYERON CUATRO TANQUES ADICIONALES. EL MAL TIEMPO, PARANDO EL QUINTO EJÉRCITO HASTA ABRIL, PARÓ EL APOYO AÉREO PARA LOS SOLDADOS DE BÚFALO. EL FUEGO DE ARTILLERÍA IMPIDIÓ A INGENIEROS CONSTRUIR UN PUENTE. TRES TANQUES FUERON PERDIDOS CUANDO ELLOS SE CAYERON A CRÁTERES CRUZANDO EL CANAL.
A PESAR DE NUMEROSOS CONTRAATAQUES, LOS SOLDADOS DE BÚFALO ESTABLECIERON UNA LÍNEA DE DEFENSA AL NORTE DEL CANAL. SIN UN PUENTE, ELLOS TUVIERON QUE LLEVAR PROVISIONES DE EJÉRCITO A TRAVÉS DEL AGUA EN LA MANO. LAS PÉRDIDAS DE SOLDADO MONTABAN, Y LAS ARMAS COSTERAS SIGUIERON GOLPEANDO CON FUERZA. DURANTE LA NOCHE DEL 10 DE FEBRERO, LA ALMENDRA SUSPENDIÓ EL ATAQUE Y ORDENÓ QUE SUS TROPAS SE RETIRARAN ATRÁS A TRAVÉS DEL CANAL. LA OPERACIÓN DE FEBRERO CUESTA 22 TANQUES y más de 1,100 MUERTES. PRIMERO SGT. El CARUD BAILEY ERA UNA DE AQUELLAS MUERTES. ÉL HABÍA DADO SU VIDA PARA LA DOBLE VICTORIA.
Soy el Coronel Murphy, Estados Unidos. De ejército jubilado, y GRACIAS POR mirar el SEGMENTO MILITAR DEL CALENDARIO DE MES DE HISTORIA FEBONE1960.NET NEGRO. Venga otra vez MAÑANA CUANDO AFRONTAMOS UN ENFRENTAMIENTO con JIM CROW.

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    Posted 4 years, 8 months ago at 6:15 pm. Add a comment

    Double Victory Part III: Showdown With The Black Press

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    John Sengstacke had become the publisher of the Chicago Defender after the death of his uncle, Robert S. Abbott in 1940. Sengstacke was very dismayed at the growing threat of censorship.

    A meeting was arranged at the Justice Department between Biddle and Sengstacke. Biddle referenced articles he felt were harmful to the war effort and asked publishers to cease publishing such articles. Sengstacke left the meeting with an extraordinary agreement. Biddle promised that he would not prosecute if the black press would not escalate their campaign during the war.

    The reporting of the treatment of black soldiers in the military was extremely important. Southern commanders were always placed in charge of black troops. The powers to be within the military felt that the southern commanders knew quote un- quote how to handle the black soldier. Major General Almond who commanded the 92nd Infantry was himself a southern commander.

    Lt. Otis Zachary obeyed Almond’s order and began a barrage of artillery fire towards Lt. John Fox’s position. When all the smoke cleared Lt. John Fox had given his life for the double victory. Lt. Otis Zachary had taken it for the very same cause. However, Lt. Otis Zachary’s life would never be the same.

    I’m Colonel Butch Murphy U.S. Army retired and I’m Susan Kidd. Please join Febone1960.net Black History Month Calendar tomorrow for the Double Victory Part IV.

    For Spanish and hearing impaired versions, please go to the Febone1960.net Black History Month Calendar

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      Posted 4 years, 8 months ago at 4:51 am. Add a comment

      The Buffalo Soldiers: Men of Honor

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      From the Revolutionary War on, African Americans have fought in every major conflict in which the United States has been involved. Each time, black soldiers were committed to combat in racially segregated units, and had to prove themselves all over again. Regardless, we served with distinction.

      Of the one million Black Americans selected for Army duty during World War II, only one black division saw infantry combat in Europe: the 92nd Infantry division.

      The vast majority of African Americans in uniform were assigned to segregated construction or supply units or placed in units that performed unpleasant duties such as graves registration. The government’s view was that blacks were not motivated enough or aggressive enough to fight.

      In the spring of 1944, after years of pressure from the black community, the government grudgingly rescinded its policy excluding African American soldiers from combat.

      While the 92nd was referred to as a black unit, and its enlisted men and most of its junior officers were black, its higher officers were white. The 92nd, which had fought in France during World War I, was once again activated in 1942. Under the command of Major General Edward M. Almond, the 92nd began combat training in October 1942 and went into action in Italy in the summer of 1944.

      The unit continued a long and proud tradition by retaining the buffalo as its divisional symbol. The 92nd even kept a live buffalo as a mascot.

      The nickname “Buffalo Soldier” dates back to the late 1860s, when black soldiers volunteered for duty in the American West. The American Indians coined the phrase “Buffalo Soldier” out of respect for their worthy enemy. According to one story, the Indians thought that the black soldiers, with their dark skin and curly hair, resembled buffaloes. Another story attributes the name to the buffalo hides that many black soldiers wore during the harsh winters out west, as a supplement to their inadequate government uniforms.

      When the Buffalo Soldiers deployed along the front, they began to work together with the tankers of the U.S. 1st Armored Division.

      The main attack started on September 10, and three days later the Buffalo Soldiers and the 1st Armored tankers stood at the base of the northern Apennines. This momentum continued as the Buffalo Soldiers entered the Serchio Valley in the later part of the month.

      Two black officers leading the Buffalo Soldiers were Lt. Otis Zachary and Lt. John Fox. Zachary and Fox were best friends. As a matter of fact, Zachary stood as Fox’s best man.

      By now, the Buffalo Soldiers controlled the crucial east-west communications artery for the Germans.

      In early October, they were ordered to take the city of Massa, near the coast, which was the first step in capturing the enemy’s naval base at La Spezia. The Germans resisted fiercely. Beset by cold autumn rains, the Buffalo Soldiers found themselves fighting an additional enemy—mud.

      After a six-day battle for control of Massa, the Buffalo Soldiers pulled back to regroup. A fourth regiment with black soldiers, and men came under the division’s control. The 366th Infantry regiment had originally trained for combat but had been initially assigned to guard duty on Allied air bases throughout Italy. The men of the 366th had performed so well in their former assignment, their commanding general did not want to give them up. Curtis and Mariah’s second born son, First Sgt. Carud (pronounced Cord) Bailey was a member of this regiment.

      As the Buffalo Soldiers moved deeper into the Serchio Valley, re-supply became a logistical nightmare. No vehicles could reach the Buffalo Soldiers as they fought their way to the high ground of the 35-miles-long valley. The Buffalo Soldiers found themselves depenedent upon pack animals, the same mode of transport employed by Hannibal when he invaded Italy more than 2100 years earlier.

      On Christmas Eve, the second battalion of the Buffalo Soldiers was sent into the little village of Sommocolonia. There seemed to be little enemy activity, so most of the 2nd battalion moved out for duty elsewhere, leaving only two platoons. Before sunrise on the day after Christmas, the Germans attacked Sommocolonia, and with two hours, the two American platoons were surrounded. A third platoon moved up to reinforce the embattled Sommocolonia troops. Lt. John Fox, an artillery forward observer for the 366th was a member of that platoon. When enemy troops surrounded the lieutenant’s position inside a house, and were about to over-run him, he ordered artillery fire directly on his own position.

      Receiving that order was Fox’s best friend and best man, Lt. Otis Zachary. Zachary immediately recognized that such action would result in grave detriment to his friend John Fox. Maj-General Edward Almond intervened and ordered Zachary to fire.

      What would you do if you were Zachary? Would you follows orders and kill your best friend, or would you face court martial?

      I’m Colonel Butch Murphy U.S. Army retired. Join us tomorrow for the outcome.

      For Spanish and hearing impaired versions, please go to the Febone1960.net Black History Month Calendar

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        Posted 4 years, 8 months ago at 11:55 pm. Add a comment