23 January 2019 | robertpaulk
SwanningAround's Review Unforgivably Inaccurate
When Holden rejoins his 36th division unit, one of his soldiers says "We're gonna cross the Rapido". The film ignores the crossing, just shows 10 seconds of a pontoon bridge being erected, then proceeds to some village fighting. Swanning's review praises commanding general Mark Clark, the real life man in charge of this mission.
History shows that the Rapido mission (in fact across the Gari River) was an ill-conceived colossal catastrophe, one of the worst blunders of WW2. Despite his field officers' protests that the mission was tactically unsound with many other favorable options, Clark ordered the attack consisting of rubber rafts across an open river directly under German fire. The American troops were routed, 1,300 kiled or wounded and 700 captured in 2 days. So disastrous was this battle that in 1946 Congress conducted an investigation of the matter, trying to assign blame to Clark's inexplicable conduct. It ended in a whitewash of Clark, but despite being the CG in Korea, that was the end of his career. He never spoke of it again, but thousands of Texan relatives of those slaughtered soldiers continue to hate Clark and revile his name.