Friday, August 20, 2010
Unhappy New Zealanders after taking heavy casualties
During the period of 14 to 17 July, 1942, the New Zealanders had been committed to battle and had heavy casualties that they blamed on lack of support. This period had cost the New Zealand Division as much as 1,405 officers and men. These were either killed or wounded or taken prisoner by the Axis forces. The New Zealand forces had been initially successful in their operations. What had gone wrong is that they had moved forward and then were left vulnerable to attacking German armour. General Auchinleck felt that they needed to take some risks in order to make an attack that might cause the enemy to retreat from El Alamein. The New Zealand Division commander had been told that the 1st Armoured Division would support his division's operations. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.