Friday, January 19, 2007
Morning of the tenth day of the Crusader Battle
The 4th Armoured Brigade had stayed in place on the morning of the tenth day of the Crusader Battle. Robert Crisp had general forboding of what might happen next. He said "every action has an equal and opposite reaction". Alec Gatehouse had a conference for squadron commanders at 9am. Since Robert was acting as squadron commander, he was there. They met a Alec Gatehouse's tank. The status was that the 7th Armoured Brigade had been sent to the rear. The 22nd Armoured Brigade had brought up to a strength of 42 tanks, from salvaging and repairing tanks. 4th Armoured Brigade had grown to 77 tanks, so they were the strongest unit left in 30th Corps. The nasty truth was that they now had 119 tanks of the original 600 tanks left on strength. They found out that General Cunningham had been relieved of his command. He was replaced by General Neil Ritchie. None of them had ever heard of General Ritchie, a staff officer. They knew that they army had lacked a resolute commander, so they were willing to give General Ritchie a chance. This is based on the account in Robert Crisp's book Brazen Chariots.