Operation Group VII

This was a US special forces operation to land a 29-man Office of Strategic Services party, all of Greek ethnic origins, for operations in the Peloponnese region of German-occupied southern Greece to aid local resistance forces (15 May/22 June 1944).

Late in February 1944 the 'Group VII' team was recalled from the island of Vis off the coast of German-occupied Yugoslavia for an operation in the Peloponnese under the command of Captain J. A. Rodgers with Captain Ronald J. Darr and second in command. After several attempts to reach Greece by sea and air, the party flew from Brindisi in south-eastern Italy during the night of 15/16 May and parachuted safely into Greece near Lala. The party reconnoitred the area round this for the next few days in order to learn something of the area in which it was based.

On 2 June, however, the party was ordered to the Gulf of Corinth, and reached the Allied camp near Kalavrita. On 4/5 June the party reconnoitred the road linking Corinth and Patras, and also the railway line along the southern shore of the Gulf of Corinth. On 6/7 June a patrol provided flank security for officers of the Allied mission in the area, together with Andartes personnel, to lay demolition charges on bridges and under the road. The resulting explosions destroyed a road bridge and collapsed a railway bridge as the Germans tried to run a locomotive over it. No Germans were encountered.

On 21/22 June, after undertaking patrols and security operations in the Peloponnese, the 'Group VII' party returned to Taranto in southern Italy by destroyer.