Sunday, February 26, 2006

Later on 16 June 1941 in the desert

Developments on the British side on 16 June 1941 were that the corps commander, General Beresford-Peirse visited his two division commanders, Generals Creagh (7th Armoured Divsion) and Messervy (4th Indian Division). Later in the day, General Wavell flew up to Sidi Barrani. The plan for the next day was that with the 22nd Guards Brigade holding the Fort Capuzzo area, the 4th Armoured Brigade would join the 7th Armoured Brigade to fight the German armoured units.

The German situation was that while the 8th Panzer Regiment had taken many losses, the efficient German recovery and repair had restored many tanks to service. The 15th Panzer Regiment, facing the British along the coast and frontier was concerned that the British would advance from Fort Capuzzo. Meanwhile, the Germans at Halfaya Pass were running low on supplies, as they were isolated. There was a good deal of uncertainty as to how well the 5th Light Division was doing versus the British 7th Armoured Division. The German plan for the 17th was for both armoured divisions to push for Halfaya Pass. The 5th Light Division would follow a track through Sidi Suleiman while the 15th Panzer Division would hed through Alam Abu Dihak.
This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Official History.

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