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AFV Club 35176 1:35 Churchill Mk. III - Dieppe Raid

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Original price $142.95 - Original price $142.95
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The Churchill A22 was a British heavy infantry tank of the Second World War. The first prototypes were built in 1940, and serial production was carried out in the period 1941-1945. In total, about 7,400 copies of this tank of all versions were produced, which makes it one of the most produced British tanks during the Second World War. The Churchill was powered by a Bedford 350 hp  engine. The armament of the vehicle is - depending on the version - a single 40mm, 57mm or 75mm cannon or a 95mm howitzer and two 7.92mm Besa machine guns.

Tank Churchill was constructed on the basis of a modified design of the A20 tank, which was built before 1939. Due to the huge losses in equipment suffered by the British army in the French campaign in 1940, the new vehicle was quickly put into mass production. It turned out to be a big mistake, because the first versions of the tank Churchill were underdeveloped, emergency and not very friendly to their crews. However, by 1942 most of the tank's defects revealed in the course of its operation had been removed and it turned out that the Churchill was quite a successful design. It had strong armor, good ability to overcome terrain obstacles and a low silhouette that facilitated the camouflage of the vehicle. The disadvantages were poor armament and low top speed - only 13 km/h in the field! A dozen or so versions of this tank were made in the course of serial production. Chronologically, the first was the Churchill I, armed with a 2-pounder 40 mm gun in the turret and 76.2 mm howitzer in the hull of the vehicle - but it was highly underdeveloped and had a high failure rate. Churchill III soon followed - it had the new 57mm ROQF 6-pounder gun in the turret and better armour. The mark IV was very similar to mark III - the most widely produced version, differing only in the method of turret production. Another major change came with the Churchill VII, which received a 75mm main gun and reinforced frontal armor. There was also a mark VIII with the main armament of the 95 mm caliber howitzer in the turret. Specialized versions of the Churchill also appeared. One of the more interesting ones is the Churchill AVRE, armed with a powerful 290 mm Petard mortar and designed to destroy enemy fortifications, or the Churchill Crocodile with a flamethrower at the front of the hull. Churchill tanks were sent to the USSR as part of the Lend-Lease program, and they were also used by the Canadian army and the Polish Armed Forces in the West (PES).

The raid on Dieppe (code named Operation Jubilee ) was carried out on August 19, 1942. On the Allied side, about 6,000 people participated in it, mainly from the Canadian 2nd Infantry Division and British commando units. On the German side, about 1,500 soldiers took part in the operation, mainly from the 302nd Infantry Division. It is worth adding that the above estimates for both sides do not include sailors and airmen involved in the fighting. Often, it is assumed that the Dieppe raid was for political rather than military reasons. On the one hand, it was to show the will of Great Britain to fight, and on the other hand, it was to show the American side the total unreality of a large-scale landing plan in Europe in 1942. From the military side, it was to test some landing techniques in practice and to identify the fortifications of the Atlantic Wall. The plan of the operation assumed the capture of the city and the port of Dieppe, the destruction of the port facilities there, the capture of the prisoners and the withdrawal of the Allied troops to the British Isles. While the operations on the left flank of the invasion forces were fairly efficient and with low losses, the situation on the right flank was catastrophic, before the Allied troops disembarked! The element of surprise completely failed, only about 30-35% of the landing ships reached the beaches, and the German troops inflicted very high losses on the landing parties. As a result, as early as 11.00 am, the commander of the operation, General Roberts, gave the order to retreat. The entire operation ended in a disgraceful defeat of the Allied forces, which lost about 3,500-4,000 people and about 100 RAF planes out of about 6,000 soldiers taking part in the operation. It is worth adding that these losses were incurred within just a dozen or so hours of the operation being carried out! The German side lost about 600 killed and wounded.

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