The Great Raid : why this is called the great raid?

why this is called the great raid?

come on! A few hundred soldeirs who recues another few hundred?
Is that really the biggest raid the USA ever had??

Marius

Re: why this is called the great raid?

'Cuz the title 'The pretty good raid' just doesn't cut it.

Props to Gary Larson & 'The Far Side'.

Re: why this is called the great raid?

And they blamed the war in Europe why they didn't raid it before.

Like they couldn't spend 150 solders before.

Marius

Re: why this is called the great raid?

They couldn't launch the raid until they had US forces back in the Philippines. So it was more than just having a few hundred soldiers available to go on the raid.

Re: why this is called the great raid?

It was the biggest and most successful Prisoner of War rescue mission in US military history, and I'm not aware of any other successful POW rescue of similar or greater size by any other country's forces.

A force of about 130 US Army Rangers and 200 Filipino guerrillas infiltrated 30 miles into Japanese-occupied territory to a camp guarded by 300 Japanese troops with several thousand more in the immediate vicinity. They raided the camp, wiped out the entire guard detail and inflicted hundreds of more casualties on the other Japanese units, and rescued all of the over 500 POWs while suffering only a handful of casualties (although one of the POWs died of illness shortly after being rescued as in the film), then because none of the POWs were in any condition to walk, had them ride out on water buffalo-driven carts provided by the local populace the entire 30 miles back to American lines.

A couple of footnotes:

As long as you mentioned the European Theater, the Great Raid on Cabanatuan was so successful that a couple of months later, General George S. Patton decided to do his own version of it on the POW camp in Hammelburg, Germany where his son-in-law, a colonel, was one of the prisoners. He made two mistakes: he didn't take into account that, the Philippines being a US Commonwealth at the time, Cabanatuan may have been enemy-occupied but was actually US soil and the locals were US nationals on the same side as the raiders, while Hammelburg was twice as deep into German soil and the locals were the enemy themselves. And he didn't send in Rangers and guerrillas on foot but sent in a tank and mechanized infantry task force, just about the noisiest vehicles the US Army had. Patton's task force did make it to the camp but was immediately surrounded; not only were all their vehicles knocked out and nearly the entire task force captured themselves without freeing a single POW, but Patton's son-in-law was shot in the butt in the middle of the raid. It was the only real defeat Patton's army suffered in Europe, and the only mistake he ever admitted to besides slapping the soldiers in Sicily.

The only rescue mission since Cabanatuan that I can think of, that successfully rescued a large body of people deep in hostile territory, was the Israeli Defense Forces raid on Entebbe Airport, Uganda in 1976 where 102 Air France airline passengers and crew were being held hostage by PLO terrorist cells. Not nearly as many people rescued, but a lot longer trip.

Re: why this is called the great raid?

Mad Tom..Thank you for your response..This is an incredible story, worthy of more then a movie. This is the type of story that should be taught in every American school room.
Another great part of the story is that Mucci was to receive the "Medal of Honor" but he decided to accept the "Distinguished Service Cross" so it would be given to him by MacArthur.
I can't believe I've never even heard this story before. I just happen to come across it when it was on TV. Kinda sad that I only find out about a great American hero by accidently catching a movie on TV. But I'm glad I did.

Re: why this is called the great raid?

Read the book Ghost Soldiers.

Re: why this is called the great raid?

Maybe it's a little wink to "the great escape" ?

Who died and made you *beep* king of the zombies?
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