Saturday, June 09, 2007
The Axis withdrawal, starting 7 December 1941
The Official History says that the Axis rearguard operations were effective, because the British forces never seriously interfered with the Axis withdrawal to the Gazala line. On the night of 7 December 1941, "two battalions of the 2rd Infantry Brigade (Brigadier C.H.V. Cox) and a few tanks broke out of the western face of the El Duda salient and advanced almost as far as the Tobruk-El Adem road". By the next morning, the Axis forces were obviously pulling out of locations such as Bir el Gubi. The 7th Armoured Division was ordered to advance to what later was called Knightsbridge "twelve miles south of Acroma". Wikipedia has a good overall map of the area that lists most important locations. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.