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Extra resources for Fueling the Fires of Resistance AAF Special Operations in the Balkans During World War II AFD-100924-043
The British sided with the non-Communist forces. Although RAF squadrons from 334 Wing were employed to support British troops on the ground, AAF transports did not participate in these operations. Albania also became the site of AAF C-47 operations in 1944, especially during the summer and fall. By June the forces of the Communist Provisional Peoples Government (or LNC) numbered about 20,000. British leaders sympathized with the anti-Communist followers of King Zog, but when efforts to reconcile the two groups failed, London decided to support the LNC on the purely military grounds that the Communists were engaging four German divisions.
Heavy fighting was taking place between Partisans and retreating Germans, and these people were caught in the middle. The assignment went to the 51st Squadron, commanded by Maj. Bruce C. Dunn. Within three days, an emergency airstrip, located midway between Fiume and Zagreb, was ready to receive incoming C-47s. But the situation was extremely hazardous because Partisans were fighting Germans only three miles away. Major Dunn had based thirteen C-47s at an airfield outside Zadar, a coastal town 100 miles southeast of Fiume.
The aircraft took off at 1315 hours, marking the end of an extraordinarily successful project: between August 9 and December 27, a total of 417 personnel had been flown out of Serbia, including 343 American airmen. 32 Little One's Journey Meanwhile, the Partisans continued to assist in the evacuation of downed airmen, often at great cost to themselves. As OSS officer John G. S. airmen to their home bases between January 30, 1944, and March 1, 1945. A typical episode involved the crew of the B-24 Little One from the 464th Bomb Group.
Fueling the Fires of Resistance AAF Special Operations in the Balkans During World War II AFD-100924-043