19 August, 1942
1942 was a hard year of the war for the Allies. Great Britain could not boast a single victory in the field. British and Commonwealth troops in North Africa were being contained and driven back by the Africa Corps. In the Far East the Japanese were dismembering and occupying substantial parts of the former British Empire. The Americans were still feeling the after effects of their material losses at Pearl Harbor and struggling to maintain what was left of their Philippine Army and the Russians were being steadily pushed back as Hitler developed his thrust into the Caucusus. The immediate outlook was bleak.
The most serious situation was on the Russian Front where immense armies were pitted against each other in a fight to the death. There seemed to be no way of stopping the German offensive. Stalin called loudly and often for an offensive in the West to reduce some of the pressure on his armies. At this stage of the war a Russian military collapse was considered a possibility with a consequent catastrophic effect on the whole Allied war effort.
The Russian plea was strongly supported by the Americans, even though they themselves were unable to provide significant material support, or troops, for an offensive in the West. There was significant agitation by several senior American military and naval leaders, that, unless an offensive in the West was developed and executed within the short term, they would concentrate their efforts in the Pacific against the Japanese. The general public also agitated for offensive action to support the beleaguered Russians. Mass rallies held in both Trafalgar Square in London and Madison Square gardens in New York, during April 1942, called for "a second front now!"
There was, therefore, unbearable pressure on Churchill and the British Chiefs of Staff to develop and execute an offensive operation on the Western front - an operation that would, it was hoped, either draw German divisions from the Russian front, or at least hold the existing divisions in France in place thus preventing additional reinforcements being sent to the East.
It was against this menacing background that the Dieppe raid was planned and executed.
This FSO Setup will attempt to recreate the air battle that took place over Dieppe on the 19th of August 1942
You can contact all the squads on your side here.
Please note the updated rules.