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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Action 4-6-18 over Palestine 1 Sqn AFC


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I wounder if you have any ideas on who brought down Lt Tonkin and Camm during an operation near Bireh in Palestine 4th June 1918.

Its reported that 18 planes sent out to bomb an area (unknown) and there plane a BF (B1276) was brought down and landed near Bireh, reported by a German plane?

Can anyone say what unit or German pilot brought them down?



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Can't seem to find a match for that location. Bireh is north of Jerusalem, over which there were few/no aerial engagements in comparison to the bitter battles elsewhere. A few extracts relating to the area concerned (split into 3 posts on account of the file size limitations). post-88270-0-82589200-1394830891_thumb.p

June 1918 . post-88270-0-79378500-1394830960_thumb.p

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Further checking finds a nice write up in the AWM Vol 8 (AFC during the war) pages 124-125.

Which states that T & C were part of a patrol to Damieh when near Jerusalem they were fired on by AAA, during which they saw a Rumpler which they engaged untill Camm being wounded.

They record that the plane landed at the nearest hosp and the use of Birch appears incorrect and could be Belah?

The name Birch came from "One Airmans War" by Joe Bull, which records the details of T & C action and having to repair the engine after damage at Birch. unless there was more then one village named Birch it must be around Beleh some where as the line was south of Gaza at that time.

I record this on Lt Camm

CAMM Richard Andrew 382 2/Lt Farmer age 21 Scottsdale Tas (26th LH TMI) Enl 18-8-14 Emb L/Cpl CSqn/3 LHR. To T/Cpl 29-5-15 to Cpl 10-9-15 Gallipoli. to SQMS 29-12-15 att WFF prom 2/Lt 3Bn 12Co 1-7-16 prom Lt 6-1-17 to QM 4Bn HQ 24-4-17 WIA 4-12-17 reported on raid at Bald Hill (GSW L/foot) to (Obsver) cadet 3 SMA 23-1-18 to C Flight 67 Sqn (1 Sqn) AFC 24-3-18 WIA 4-6-18 (GSW L/wrist) reported with Lt Tonkin (pilot) BF (B1276) brought down by a German Rumpler near Bireh on patrol to Damieh (3 victories) RTA 3-8-18 "Karoola" disch 28-4-19 med unfit later WWII (VX16147) Capt 2/2 Pnr Bn Enl 22-5-40 KIA 27-6-41 MID during the action that killed him "he was killed during action in which Lt Cutler won the VC in Syria" Buried Damascus War Cemetery related Albert 12Bn and Son Richard 2/2 Pnr Bn was KIA after capture by the japs when his ship was sunk by US submarine


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