Interview of a Sidi Rezegh Veteran–from the IWM

This is a very interesting interview with a very lucid veteran of 6 R.T.R., the commander of ‘B’ Squadron, then Major John Francis Miller.

The Western Desert part starts around 10:50 minutes, and the Operation CRUSADER bit around 19:30 minutes: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/80012166

From the description:

REEL 3 Continues: change of Yussef Ali’s award to George Cross, 1940; character of Nablus-Jenin-Tulkarum Triangle in Palestine; occasions when he clashed with Arab bands; contact with Arab Legion. Recollections of operations commanding B Sqdn, 6 Royal Tank Regt in North Africa, 1941: taking command of squadron, 5/1941; opinion of Crusader Tank; re-equipping and training squadron, 6/1941; move to wire for start of Operation Crusader; problems of losing way at night in desert; contrast between desert in Jordan and Western Desert; objectives of Operation Crusader, 11/1941; capture of Sidi Rezegh airfield; advancing to Trigh Capuzzo and opening fire on German staff car; how his tank was knocked out in wadi, 11/1941. REEL 4 Continues: his capture by Germans. Recollections of period as POW in Italy, 1941-1943:

I have previously provided the war diary of 6 R.T.R. for the operation, at this link. This shows Major Miller, OC ‘B’ Squadron as captured during the attack across the heights.

The Major’s recollection is quite good, and provides some very interesting detail on the start of the operation. The description of the battle of Sidi Rezegh is excellent, and provides a very clear tank turret view of the first two days on Sidi Rezegh.

Here is also an interview with John Fraser, who became the driver of Monty’s tank: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/80010039

REEL 4 Continues: Reflections on service with General Montgomery: subsequent history of ‘Monty’ tank; question of what he personally owes to Montgomery; post-war contact with Montgomery; memories of the eve of El Alamein, 1942. Story of winning Military Medal at Sidi Rezegh, 22/11/1941. REEL 5 Continues: Story of winning Military Medal at Sidi Rezegh, 22/11/1941.

Also worth listening to. He was a driver in ‘C’ Squadron 8 R.T.R., equipped with Valentine tanks. The relevant part starts at 26:30 minutes, but other items are also interesting.

2 thoughts on “Interview of a Sidi Rezegh Veteran–from the IWM

  1. Enjoy your work and look forward to the completed book. The interview link results in screen with”no playable content” message as with other IWM interviews. Any suggestions?
    Thanks

    • Hi Ed. That’s really strange. I am having the same issue at work. I will try again at home. In the meantime, have you maybe got something disabled in your browser that prevents streaming media?

      All the best

      Andreas

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