Monday, June 18, 2012

The situation worsens over 27 and 28 April 1941

At the Argos beaches and at Kalamata there were men gathered in anticipation of being picked up by destroyers. There were 2,000 at the Argos beaches and the numbers were growing with the arrival of stragglers. There were a large number, some 8,000 troops, at Kalamata. Many of these were not British or Commonwealth troops, but were Cypriot, Greek, Middle Eastern base troops. There were even 300 of the 4th Hussars. Over the night of 27th and 28th April, there were no ships. There was still one New Zealand brigade left in Greece at Monemvasia. They were armed, but without artillery. The plan was to embark the brigade on the night of 28-29 April on warships. The cruiser Ajax and four destroyers embarked the brigade that night and brought off the troops, including General Freyberg. They also hoped to send two cruisers to Kalamata as well. The deep penetration of the Germans into the Pelopoppenese greatly complicated the situation. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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