Wednesday, March 03, 2010

The last half of 11 July 1942: the Pedestal convoy

In the last of the midday air attacks on 11 July 1942, an Italian bomber dropped an armour-piercing bomb on the aircraft carrier Victorious. The bomb broke up on hitting the armoured flight deck and the ship was undamaged. After passing north of Galita Island, the convoy fought off a series of submarine attacks. The destroyer Ithuriel sank the Italian submarine Cobalto during this time. By 6:30pm, air attacks recommenced, this time from aircraft based on Sicily. Two casualties happened within the half hour of attacks. The destroyer Foresight was disabled and had to be sunk. The other casualty was the aircraft carrier Indomitable, which took three bomb hits on her flight deck, which became unusable. Her aircraft had to land on the Victorious. Force Z turned away at 7pm and Force X was left to take the convoy in to Malta. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.

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