Monday, February 13, 2012

Thermopylae from 19 to 22 April 1941

British troops waited at Thermopylae for the expected German attack. The army commander's headquarters was now at Thebes. ANZAC Corps headquarters would be at Levadia. General Freyberg was to have his headquarters near Longos. General Mackay was ordered to move his headquarters to a position near Ayla Marina. He was unhappy with such a move, as the forward troops defending Brallos would be 20 miles distant. 16th Brigade, now reduced to two "weak battalions" would hold the west side. At sunset on 21 April 1941, the 2/7th Battalion was about four miles forward of Brallos. The 2/6th Battalion was to the west. The 2/5th Battalion returned and was in reserve. The new positions were very weak and really needed divisions, not brigades. Although the New Zealand Division was still relatively intact, the 6th Australian Division had three battalions that greatly reduced in strength. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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