Monday, September 11, 2006

The Desert Air Force Strength on 17 November 1941

The Desert Air Force, commanded by Air Vice-Marshal Coningham, had been increased in strength considerably. By 17 November 1941, the air force had the following units, as quoted from the Official History:

Short range fighters: 14 squadrons (including one naval squadron)
Long-range fighters: 2 squadrons
Medium bombers: 8 squadronds (for a short time 9)
Tactical reconnaissance: 3 squadrons
Survey reconnaissance: 1 flight
Strategic reconnaissance: 1 flight

The SAAF played a considerable part, having provided six squadrons and two flights. The RAAF had two squadrons, the Rhodesians had one squadron as did the Free French. Of course, the heavy bombers (probably Wellingtons at this date), fighters, and reconnaissance aircraft in the theater also occasionally made an appearance in combat. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.

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