Saturday, November 26, 2005

The Aliakmon front in 1941

General Wilson arrived in Athens on 4 March 1941, but the Greek government asked him to remain in civilian clothes and not advertise his presence. This made his task as commander quite difficult. He was not able to personally reconnoiter Aliakmon. The basic position was strong, and had slopes facing the potential attack that sharply descended. There were four passes through which traffic could flow. The main difficulty was that the position could be readily turned by a force attacking through Yugoslavia from Monastir to Florina. If an attack developed from that direction, the British would have to make a difficult withdrawal under air attack. The terrain through which such a retreat would have to be made was mountainous and had little cover. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Official History.

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