Tuesday, September 24, 2013

More about Retimo in May 1941 on Crete

The 2/11th Battalion was the closest to Retimo on the west end of their position located by Hill B. To their right was the 4th Greek Battalion. About a mile to the south at Adhele was the 5th Greek Battalion. The 2/1st Battalion was on the far east of the position. They were spread from Hill A west to the 4th Greek Battalion. Hill A had two 100mm guns, four 75mm guns, and a machine gun platoon. Hill B had two 100mm guns and another machine gun platoon. The two tanks were hidden under the olive trees in the Wadi Pigi. The defenders of the Retimo apparently made good use of camouflage, because they found pictures on a crashed German reconnaissance aircraft that only showed one of the positions, which they altered. The assault on the airfield at Retimo began on 20 May 1941. The first 14 aircraft that they saw turned towards Canea. At noon, twenty aircraft flew over towards Heraklion. At 4pm, the Germans staged an attack with fighters and bombers on the airfield. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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