The incredible details of the bold, near-disastrous first Allied airborne commando raid.
Audacious to the extreme, Operation Colossus was a raid in the early, dark days of the Second World War, when Britain stood seemingly alone. After the country's defeats in western Europe in 1940, Prime Minister Winston Churchill insisted on an aggressive raiding campaign. Conducted on February 10, 1941, Operation Colossus was one such raid, meant to steal back the initiative and create as much chaos for the Axis powers as possible.
However, bad luck stalked the mission, as one mishap after another seemed to foredoom the operation. In the aftermath, there were recriminations as well as accolades. Few military operations have proven as controversial.
Colonel Bernd Horn is a retired Regular Force infantry officer and military educator. Dr. Horn has authored, co-authored, and edited more than forty books, including A Most Ungentlemanly Way of War: The SOE and the Canadian Connection and No Ordinary Men: Special Operations Forces Missions in Afghanistan. He lives in Kingston, Ontario.