Sunday, September 10, 2006

The SAS raids on 16 November 1941

Two separate raids took place on 16 November 1941 by two detachments from the SAS. One flew on three Bombays to Gazala and the other on two Bombays to Tmimi. The weather was bad, with heavy rain and low visibility. This made navigation difficult, and only one the five Bombays dropped its men on target. The rain had "turned dust into bog", and there were men injured on landing besides. The operations failed and the attacks never took place. Only some of the attackers escaped. "Others were killed or taken prisoner". The only positive feature of the weather is that the Axis airfields were much more effected than the British. That helped to secure surprise for the impending attack, as the Axis aircraft were stuck in mud on their landing fields. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.

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