Monday, July 11, 2005
More about the capture of Tobruk
It was the 2/3 Australian Battalion that moved forward at 5:40am on January 21st, 1941. There was an artillery bombardment and the engineers had worked during the night to clear mines and disarm booby traps. It was the 6th Australian Division on the attack. Not more than an hour later, the 16th Brigade, supported by 18 infantry tanks, had pushed through the perimeter into the Tobruk area. They consolidated the gap, setting up to the east and west to protect the gap from attack. The 19th Brigade moved north. They had help through the day from the air. By 3:45pm, Tobruk had fallen. They took 23,000 soldiers and 2,000 sailors prisoner. They captured 208 medium and field guns. There were also 87 tanks captured. This is based on the account in Vol.I of the Official History.