Sunday, May 01, 2011

Outmanned at every turn: April 1941 in Greece

Not only were the British and Dominion ground troops out-manned by the Germans, but the air force was in even worse shape. There were only 80 serviceable aircraft in Air Vice-Marshal D'Albiac's force in Greece. They would have to face something like 800 German and 300 Italian aircraft. The one Army Cooperation Squadron was mostly equipped with Westland Lysanders, which could not face serious air opposition. The squadron was hard-pressed to muster even a single Hurricane. The force under General Wilson's command was outmatched in every way, with no prospect of success. You have to wonder why they persisted in the operation. The only result would be what you would expect. They would be hustled out of Greece by the Germans with the loss of their precious equipment and some nearly irreplaceable (at this date) troops. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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