Wednesday, February 17, 2010

More of the war at sea in late June and July 1942

Admiral Harwood had moved from Alexandria to Ismailia on 2 July 1942. A few days before, on 30 June, the submarine depot ship Medway had been torpedoed and sunk while on the way to Haifa. Haifa had seemed like a good possible submarine base. Not only was the Medway sunk, but the almost 90 torpedoes on board were lost. Fortunately, 47 were recovered from the wreck. As the navy grew to understand that Alexandria was going to be safe from attack by land for the near future, Admiral Harwood and his staff returned there by 8 August. A difficult situation had arisen when the British withdrew from Alexandria, as the French squadron stayed behind. He did not want to be attacked by his erstwhile allies, as other French squadrons had been. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.

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