Saturday, August 06, 2016
The 3rd Indian Motor Brigade
We are about to see the mettle of the troops of the 3rd Indian Motor Brigade. They were also fortunate to have a good commander in Brigadier Vaughan, who had been an Indian cavalry regiment commander. After the battle at Mechili, Rommmel praised them for their ability and their break-out from Mechili. They took losses, but being a fully-motorized unit, mounted in Fordson trucks, they were able to concentrate at the critical point and break loose from the enemy encirclement. The 2nd Armoured Division was not so fortunate, and Major-General Gambier-Parry surrendered, unlike the Indian brigade. The way to the east was blocked, but the western side was more open and presented the motor brigade an opportunity to escape the encirclement. They had a good commander, but the British did not provide any artillery for the brigade, so they were hobbled by that lack. Still, they ran through German artillery, where the crews put their hands up as they were overrun by the Indian cavalry. We are going to give the full details from the Australian Official History next week.