Tuesday, May 16, 2006
The German situation from May 1941 in North Africa was quite different
For the Axis powers, especially for the Germans, the situation was reversed from the British situation. The German High Command was very conservative and did not want to risk an advance until they had built up their strength considerably. Rommel was an opportunist, and was always looking for a chance to attack the British positions. Then, you had the inter-ally politics, where the Germans wanted to see the Italians use their navy more in support of North Africa and the Italians wanted to see the Germans bring in air power and attack the Suez Canal through Turkey. It seemed that the most suitable Axis units for an attack were the 5th Light Division, the 8th Panzer Division, and the Italian Ariete armoured division. They also decided to send more medium and heavy artillery for use against Tobruk. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Official History.