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Terror at Namur 12/17/16

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What began as a mitigated attack devolved into mayhem this afternoon, as Axis forces moved over the northern bridge to Namur. It was a deceiving experience for the greener soldiers of the 8th Chasseurs, who were engaged around an enemy mobile spawn northwest of the town. Suddenly, and to their grand astonishment, an Axis paradrop barreled overhead. But they could do nothing.

As they fired into the enemy position they were besieging, the new Chasseur recruits could only watch as the friendly forces defending the town struggled to keep the enemy out. First one depot, then another fell. The officers in charge of the Chasseurs eventually abandoned their attack on the enemy position outside of town and made their way in, but it was too late. The Axis was now flooding the town, and all they could do was fight in desperate resignation. 

No one was going to rescue them in Namur.

Finally, and under the war cry of several other Allied officers, the city rallied against its occupants. Flags were returned to France for a brief period, only to be whittled away again by an armored column--the final column--coming in from the north. Inside the town, sublimesw drove a decrepit Renault R-35 (the only sad pieces of armor left) up and down the north road, scouring Axis infantry attempting to cross. More than 15 Axis bodies were found in that north-south road after his sortie. Sublime's squad mates watched him--a man broken by the anxiety of being completely overwhelmed--as he drove into a wall and turned over the Renault, crushing him instantly. 

A British destroyer squadron did arrive to relieve the battered forces in Namur, but it was too little too late. They met Axis positions on either side of the river, and were sunk repeatedly by incoming shells. The river boats couldn't even get off of the docks . . .

It was a sad afternoon that day in Namur. Both sides lost a lot of good men, and bodies were littered all over the landscape. The horror, the horror, of war.

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