Re: Naval sabotage in Tunisia in 1943
Posted by: Platon Alexiades
Date: September 25, 2015 06:25AM
Many thanks for your answer.
An attempt at naval sabotage at La Goulette by the French combat swimmer Henri Gaillot and the Belgian François Vallée (of the Mounier/Breuillac Resistance Network] was made during the night of 8/9 June 1941. They succeeded in affixing limpets to the hulls of ACHILLE and SIRIO. ACHILLE was rocked by explosions at 0045/9 June and sank in shallow waters. The two limpets attached to SIRIO failed to detonate and were found when she arrived in Naples on 12 June and removed [this is mentioned in my Corinth Canal book on page 215 if you forgive my self-advertising!].
At 0130/23 June, François Vallée was caught as he was attempting to attach limpets to the hull of BEAUCE/PROSERPINA. He confessed to have been the author to the ACHILLE's sinking.
For ACHILLE/PROSERPINA I have not found any mythological connection :-)...In any case the Gods were not kind to them as they were both sunk later in the war. ACHILLE [as I am sure you know] was later raised only to be sunk on her return trip by RAF bombers in October 1941. PROSERPINA was sunk by a RAF bomber [piloted by a Canadian I must add for a touch of patriotism!] on 26.10.1942.
However to return to my original question, I am curious to know who were the authors of the attempt on PIERRE CLAUDE in 1943? After the death of Mounier, the network was taken over by Tardy who provided information by radio until May 1943 but[to my knowledge] did not carry out any sabotage.