Tuesday, January 21, 2014

24 to 26 May 1941 at Heraklion

Information had been received on 24 May 1941 at Heraklion that there were large numbers of Germans moving through the hills towards the east. The assumption was that they were preparing to attack Heraklion from the east. The defenders at Heraklion also learned that German transport aircraft were landing on the beach at Mallia. Mallia was on the coast, about fifteen miles east of Heraklion. Early on 25 May, the Germans attacked the town of Heraklion from the west. Heraklion was defended by "two companies of the York and Lancasters and one of the Leicesters". The lead troops of the Argyll and Sutherland reached the Heraklion defended area. The rest, about two companies, arrived on 25 May. They arrived on foot, having moved throough the hills. They were positioned in the line previously occupied by the Leicesters. The Leicesters that were then available became the reserve. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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