Friday, January 11, 2013
Anti-aircraft gunners right before the invasion of Crete in 1941
Once the anti-aircraft gunners at Suda Bay adopted the umbrella system of firing over the unloading ships from 19 May 1941, no ship or jetty was hit by bombs. The anti-aircraft strength at Suda Bay was really insufficient to protect against a really heavy air attack. The batteries at Suda Bay consisted of sixteen 3.7in anti-aircraft guns, the most modern type, ten older 3in guns, and only sixteen 40mm Bofors guns. Retimo did not even have any guns. Heraklion had just four 3in guns and ten 40mm Bofors guns. Up until the invasion, no anti-aircraft guns were permanently damaged and disabled. Miraculously, only six gunners were killed and eleven were wounded. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.