By Robert Crisp
Read or Download Brazen Chariots: An Account of Tank Warfare in the Western Desert, November–December 1941 PDF
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Additional resources for Brazen Chariots: An Account of Tank Warfare in the Western Desert, November–December 1941
S tank, where, under a carefully shaded torch, we were shown the plans for an attack with the Royal Horse Artillery battery on an enemy leaguer at dawn. We went back to our hard beds muttering and grumbling. I had always favoured a on a German leaguer, for the simple reason that I couldn't think of anything worse happening to us, but I didn't particularly want to get mixed up in this one. I was too damn sleepy, for a start. At four o'clock we were up and moving into the night, full-scale night attack the lighdy-armoured towing as quads, had got bogged down in a swamp which had survived from the last heavy rains.
Then I smelt the smoke. Quickly I looked down into the turret. The white, questioning faces of the gunner and operator stared back at me, and their lips formed the word "Fire". I looked back at the engine and saw the ominous fumes pouring out of the louvres. Just then the Honey stopped. I yelled at the crew to bail out, and as we jumped down to the sand we grabbed what we could off the hot armour-plating above the engine bedding, grub, water bottles, cooking utensils. We ran back through the shell-bursts and straggled wearily through the confusion and the gathering night up the side of the escarpment.
Christ, you've had a whole bogie wheel shot off. " I remembered the crack and shudder on the escarpment, saw again the puff of smoke and felt that invisible thing rushing past me through the air. I gave the side of the Honey a little pat and settled down into the blankets to get as much sleep as the clanging mechanics would allow me. They worked hard right through the night, but the job could not be done in time, and before first light we had to change equipment, food, bedding and crew with another tank.