On this day in World War II, an Allied force of 7,000 men carries out a daytime raid against German positions at the French seaport of Dieppe. Aided by tanks and aircraft, the commando force, 5,000 Canadians, 2,000 British soldiers, and a handful of American and Free French troops, gained a foothold on the beach in the face of a furious German defence. During nine hours of fighting, the Allies failed to destroy more than a handful of their targets and suffered 3,600 dead. Despite its high costs, the Dieppe raid provided valuable logistical information later used in planning the successful 1944 Allied landing at Normandy.
Allies raid Dieppe