TIL about WWII’s “the greatest raid of all”. A suicide mission of British volunteers rammed a destroyer filled with explosives into a Nazi dry dock in France to keep the Nazi’s from repairing their ships. Over half the volunteers were killed or captured.

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It’s even more impressive when you find out to get to the dry dock they had to sail the boat down a Chanel filled with guns and spotters placed there to stop this kind of thing from happening and the timing mechanism they used was incredibly inaccurate and had a high chance of detonating before the boat got anywhere near the dock


The raid is just a small part of a whole crazy series of operations to sink *Tirpitz*, sister ship of *Bismarck*. It involves numerous schemes involving everything from the Norwegian resistance to manned torpedoes to getting the famous Dam Busters to drop big ass bombs on her. It’s an insane operation to study.


There’s a book, Churchill’s Ministry of Ungentlemanly warfare, it talks about this and a few other famous operations. It’s a great read and I recommend it frequently.


*British commandos


*… or captured??!?* “I spent most of the war in a German prison. I had been on a suicide mission when me and the other boys were captured.” “How demoralizing it must have been for your mission to fail!” “Fail? Oh no we succeeded. Blew ourselves to Kingdom Come. But Mum always said to pick yourself up after a hard knock and keep on going, and that was what I learned, so there was no way I was going to just lie there all blown up, you see?”