Saturday, May 02, 2009

By 11 June 1942

As of 11 June 1942, the British defensive front at Gazala continued to hold, despite the Axis successes. The front was stabilized by the two divisions that were still intact: the 1st South African and the 5th Division. Besides that small units were spread across the desert in strong points with infantry, anti-tank guns, and field artillery. The anti-tank guns were in short supply, however. The infantry and especially the armour were becoming increasingly fractured. Because of the difficulties in resupplying units with tanks and soldiers, the armoured units had become mixtures composed from many different units. Worse, yet, while General Ritchie thought that on 10 June, he still had 250 cruiser tanks and 80 infantry tanks, he only had 77 Grants, 52 Crusaders, 56 Stuarts, and 63 infantry tanks. All the infantry tanks were in the 32nd Army Tank Brigade. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.

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