Monday, November 08, 2010
Run up to battle: August 1942
By the middle of August, the British became aware of Axis troop movements to the south of the El Alamein front. The Axis used fighter aircraft to shield their movements, making reconnaissance difficult. The British responded by escorting their reconnaissance aircraft with a large number of fighters. In August, the British lost eight reconnaissance aircraft and pilots, with another fifteen aircraft damaged. They had flown 481 sorties up to 20 August 1942, but then flew another 492 sorties in the remaining ten days of the month. Wellingtons were used tactically after 21 August against targets on the battlefield. These attacks prior to the actual start of the Battle of Alam el Halfa made life very difficult for the Axis troops. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.