Saturday, February 03, 2007
Rommel's plan for 25 November 1941
Rommel informed General Crüwell about his plans for the next day at about 5pm on 24 November 1941. Rommel intended to encircle and destroy all British forces at the frontier. 21st Panzer Division would move across the border and turn on the British rear. 15th Panzer Division would attack to the north along the wire. The Italian Mobile Corps, with the Ariete and Trieste Divisions, would advance towards Fort Capuzzo. Rommel would have the 33rd Reconnaissance Unit make a deep penetration to cut the British supply line at Habata. Rommel had already taken charge and sent the 21st Panzer Division, minus teh 5th Panzer Regiment, advancing on Halfaya Pass. The 5th Panzer Regiment was running late and was left at Gasr el Abid until morning. The other forces, such as the 15 Panzer Division, were still to the west. 15th Panzer Division was 15 miles west of the border area. Ariete was away to the west at Bir el Gubi. Trento was apparently sent to El Adem on 24 November. Rommel's briefing left General Crüwell unhappy, as he could see many difficulties in Rommel's planned movements. Not only were the distances to be covered rather substantial, but how would the units be supplied? This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.