Sunday, October 23, 2005
With General Neame out of touch with events, there was march and counter-march
General Neame was unsure of the position of his troops and the Germans. His indecision was compounded by poor communications. He had first ordered the 9th Australian Division to withdraw, and then changed his mind. The Australians were late getting the original orders. The cancelling order arrived after the movement had finally begun. They had difficulty in the dark in regaining their positions from which they had withdrawn. On 6th April, the 3rd Indian Motor Brigade repulsed an attack at Mechili. General Neame drove to visit the commander of the 2nd Armoured Division, so it was left to General O'Connor to order the general withdrawal aimed at preserving what forces the British had left. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Official History.