Monday, October 29, 2012

The situation on 29 April 1941

Newly arrived from Greece, General Maitland Wilson was sent packing. He was off to North Africa from Crete to "go to Jerusalem and relieve Baghdad". General Wavell then proceeded to tell General Freyberg about the expected German attack on Crete. They expected an attack by five to six thousand airborne troops, possibly supplemented by troops sent by sea. They would see if they could get more fighter aircraft from England. They should be able to repulse the attack with the force they had on Crete. In any case, there would be no withdrawal, because there were not enough ships. We might well think that they had all been lost in the withdrawal from Greece. That is not really true, because the navy was about to take another major hit during the attack on Crete and the subsequent attempt to withdraw troops after the Germans were seen as winning the battle. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official history.

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