Wednesday, May 02, 2012

The outlook on the night of 25-26 April 1941 in Greece

During the night of 25-26 April 1941, General Wilson moved his headquarters from Athens to Miloi. He crossed the Corinth bridge shortly before dawn. At this point, all the troops except rearguards were south of the Corinth bridge. Two brigades had already been embarked, along with about 7,000 base troops. Those north of the Corinth bridge included the 4th New Zealand Brigade, a rearguard of 1st Armoured Brigade troops, along with a few other detachments. The Corinth bridge crossed the canal that had been cut through the isthmus that connected the mainland with the Peloponnese. The commanders were concerned that German paratroops might try and take Corinth, so there was a scratch force assembled in defence. There were a diverse group of carriers and some of the 4th Hussars. There were also some infantry and engineers. The engineers had alreay prepared to blow the Corinth bridge, when that became necessary. They hoped to embark the 19th Australian Brigade from Megara that night. During the changes and indecision in General Wilson's staff, they decided at the last minute that half the brigade should head for the Marathon beaches. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.

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