Saturday, October 08, 2005

February-March 1941 in Libya

"On 21st February [1941] an aircraft on tactical reconnaissance saw to the west of El Agheila an 8-wheeled armoured car wich might have been German". British intelligence indicated, in early March 1941, that new formations had arrived at Tripoli to bolster the Italian position. These included "two Italian infantry divisions, two Italian motorized artillery regiments and at most one German armoured brigade group". Since the distance from Tripoli to El Agheila was 502 miles, General Wavell was still confident that they had time before any attack took place. On 5 March, the intelligence staff reported to General Wavell that they should be prepared for a more immediate attack with greater forces than had been previously thought possible. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Official History.

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